Passenger numbers soar 22% at Russia’s Basel Aero-managed southern airports

Basel Aero manages a number of Russian airports Over 10 million passengers were welcomed by the company's four hubs last year (Basel Aero)

Airports in the south of Russia saw business numbers take off in early 2018 as demand for domestic and international air services soared in the region.

The four southern airports of Krasnodar, Sochi, Anapa, and Gelendzhik – all of them managed by the Russian operator Basel Aero – enjoyed an impressive collective 22% year-on-year increase in passenger traffic in January.

Leading the way was demand for international travel, which increased to 60,195 passengers (up 61% over January 2017).

Basel Aero is a collaborative venture of Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska’s Basic Element (which owns 50% plus one share), Sberbank (20% minus one share), and Changi Airport Group of Singapore (30%).

Last year, the venture’s managed airports collectively handled 10.8 million passengers in the 12-month period, representing 5.8% of Russia’s total passenger flow.

The early signs are indicating a bumper 2018 for the southern airports. In January, passenger numbers through the Basel Aero-managed airports amounted to more than 715,000, or 22% more than in January 2017, when the comparable figure was 585,381.

During the month, 654,844 passengers were served on domestic routes, a 20% increase on January 2017, while international routes saw a total of 60,195 passengers, 61% up on January 2017.

The number of aircraft movements amounted to 3,066, or 11% more than in January 2017. Cargo business processed through the airports increased to 707 tons (up 13%) in the period.

Each individual airport saw positive growth in January 2018, with Sochi alone serving 387,779 passengers (up 19% up on January 2017). Of this total, 372,000 (up 17%) traveled domestically, and about 16,000 (up 92%) on international flights.

Krasnodar, which welcomed 284,640 passengers (up 27% year-on-year), saw domestic numbers exceeding 240,000 passengers (up 23%), and 44,000 (up 52%) on international routes.

Anapa airport served 44,000 passengers in January (up 17%), while Gelendzhik welcomed some 2,200.

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