Budapest Airport’s first quarter had a 19.3 per cent increase compared to 2020, it has reported.
The 39,429 tonnes of cargo handled between January and March makes it the strongest quarter in the history of the airport, with the 14,904 tonnes registered in month the highest ever for cargo traffic. As a consequence, it predicts that cargo volumes could reach 150,000 tonnes by the end of the year.
It says that the cargo performance in Budapest has been driven primarily by the handover of the BUD Cargo City in 2020, a state-of-the art €50 million investment which has resulted in an increase in dedicated cargo flights, including the flights of the various integrator companies, whilst the volume of air cargo transported by road is also “expanding strongly”. Following a longer hiatus in 2020, belly cargo, transported in the lower, cargo decks of airliners, is showing a “promising increase” at the beginning of this year, but is still at historic lows, despite the record high overall cargo volumes.
The airport adds that the role of Budapest Airport as a regional air cargo hub is continuously strengthening, even during the pandemic. Air cargo arriving at Budapest Airport is not necessarily intended for Hungary; in many cases, the goods handled here are used to supply other Central and Eastern European countries. Hungary’s function as an “air bridge” is thus becoming more and more significant, especially with regard to far eastern countries, like China. Air freight plays a very important role in supplying the economy and retail, and thus, Hungarian society. What is more, it is often the only safe and viable solution. Its indispensable role is apparent in the case of logistics disruptions such as the one caused by the stranded cargo ship in the Suez Canal this March.