EuroAirport reports a positive result for 2016 and good prospects for development in 2017
With 7.3 million passengers in 2016, EuroAirport posted a near to 4 % increase in passenger traffic compared with the previous year (7.1 million). This result was in line with the average for European airports.
By way of comparison, the number of flight movements (take-offs and landings) in commercial passenger traffic (scheduled and charter flights) posted only slight growth of almost 1 %. In 2016, a total of around 96 000 flight movements were recorded (2015: approximately 94 000).
The further increase in seating capacities, the use of larger aircraft and more frequent flights on individual routes were the main factors contributing to the growth in passenger traffic.
Four new destinations were added to the scheduled flight route network in 2016: Boa Vista and Sal on Cape Verde with TUIfly), Heringsdorf with SkyWork Airlines, Pisa with easyJet and Sofia with Wizz Air. easyJet also re-established flights to Figari and expanded its service to Funchal. Overall, there were more charter flights to Lanzarote, Malaga and Rostock.
Basel-Mulhouse Airport achieved this renewed record result in passenger traffic despite the difficult environment. The generally weaker economic situation, which resulted in lower demand for flights, was one factor. In addition, several extraordinary effects had a major impact on the 2016 results. In particular, the terrorist attacks in Turkey resulted in a huge drop in demand for holidays on the Turkish Riviera. Furthermore, interest in holiday destinations in North Africa declined; flights to Tunisia were suspended completely. Overall, there has been a 50 % decrease in flights to Morocco, Egypt and Tunisia since 2013.
EuroAirport also had to adapt its security measures in the wake of the terrorist attacks. Efficient cooperation with the authorities, airlines, ground handling service providers and other partners ensured that the impact on passengers' travel comfort was minimal.
Freight traffic: stable overall, growth in air freight
Freight business was on a par with the previous year with a total volume of 101 300 tonnes. Air freight (full freighter and express freight) rose by 12 % in total to around 55 000 tonnes.
By contrast, the proportion of trucked freight decreased by 11 % to around 46 000 tonnes. The factors responsible for this decline are the continually rising pressure on costs and the further shift in air freight volumes to sea freight.
In June 2016, EuroAirport – in cooperation with other stakeholders in the air freight industry – launched the certification process in line with the global IATA standard CEIV Pharma at the airport. This standard certifies that the locally trained and tested specialists have the necessary expertise to ensure the safe transport of temperature-sensitive pharmaceutical products. This certification will help EuroAirport to reinforce further its position as one of the main European airports for handling pharmaceutical products.
Additional noise protection measures, stricter requirements during sensitive hours
Last year, EuroAirport continued to pursue the goal of limiting noise emissions. The decision was taken to further increase the existing surcharges for flights during sensitive off-peak hours. From 1 April 2017 the surcharge will be raised by 25 % for take-offs and landings between 10-11 p.m. and by 50 % between 11 p.m. and midnight. In addition, a surcharge of 50 % will be applied to the landing fee for large aircraft with more than 200 tonnes between 11 p.m. and midnight.
Moreover, the airport doubled its annual contribution to noise protection measures for residents concerned to 1.4 million euro. Airport management also met regularly with residents and residents’ associations in the course of the last year.
Initialling of the binational state agreement concerning tax situation
The initialling of a binational agreement by France and Switzerland in November 2016 to clarify the tax situation was of significant importance for EuroAirport. It is absolutely necessary that the agreement be signed and ratified as soon as possible in order to create a secure legal situation for Swiss companies in the Swiss sector and for their future development, and to preserve the attractiveness of the airport site in the interest of the entire tri-national region.
Following the initialling of the binational agreement it was also possible to close the accounts for the previous year 2015 at the end of 2016. In 2015, EuroAirport posted a net profit of 23.3 million euro on a turnover of 136.6 million euro (+17 %). This represents a drop of 15 % compared with 2014 (27.3 million euro). Taxation of the airport’s profit, applied for the first time in 2015 and which is allocated in equal portions to France and Switzerland, amounted to 6.3 million euro.
Further investments in service quality for passengers
In 2016, EuroAirport invested a total of around 50 million euro in maintenance and improvements to its infrastructure and in increasing service quality for travellers from the tri-national region.
The airport spent 24 million euro on a new six-storey car park with around 2 700 parking spaces and 11 million euro on doubling the capacity of the baggage sorting system. Two new park-and-ride facilities were completed for a sum of 4 million euro to handle peak periods and special events. The new “P&R North” has 700 parking spaces, and “P&R South” has 900. June saw the inauguration of the new main Dufry shop.
Progress with the rail link to EuroAirport
The signing of the financing agreement on 12 April 2016 marked the start of the pre-project studies amounting to 4.6 million euro. This stage comprises technical, environmental and economic studies and the continuation of the consultation process. The studies are being conducted under the supervision of SNCF Réseau and EuroAirport and are scheduled to be completed by the end of 2017. On the Swiss side, the project is integrated into the trinational RER TRIRENO network of the region of Basel.
OUTLOOK FOR 2017
The forecast for EuroAirport’s next year is one of modest growth. The reasons for this include the elections in France and Germany, the consequences of Brexit and overall situation of insecurity.
Moderate growth in passenger traffic
EuroAirport is expecting overall growth in passenger traffic of between 3-4 % to around 7.6 million passengers. The flight offering on certain routes will be expanded, including flights with Eurowings to Palma. The airport be will also be adding five new destinations to its route network: Biarritz and Dubrovnik (in future as scheduled flights, previously only charter flights) with easyJet, Jersey and Sylt with Skywork Airlines and Osijek (Croatia) with Wizz Air. Ibéria is a completely new airline at EuroAirport offering daily services to Madrid and from there to other Spanish mainland destinations and to South America. The airport expects an increased number of flights as well the use of larger aircraft on popular destinations, in particular for business travelers.
Stable development for freight
EuroAirport is anticipating a stable freight trend of around 100 000 tonnes. In order to meet rising quality demands – in particular from the local pharmaceutical industry – the certification process in line with the IATA standard CEIV Pharma is scheduled to be completed in summer 2017.
Steady rise in service quality
A number of infrastructure and service projects will be continued or completed in 2017. The new six-storey car park is due to be put into service in the first semester of 2017. In autumn, EuroAirport will also complete the renovation work on the former freight terminal for express freight companies, which corresponds to an investment of 3 million euro.
The long-standing "EuroAirport rail link" project is taking shape: the preliminary project studies are being continued this year and the consultation process is planned for 2018. The subsequent “enquête d’utilité publique” (public utility enquiry) will allow the definition of the framework for the construction phase to begin.
To safeguard the trinational region’s need for air transport in future too, the Board of Directors will define a long-term strategy as part of the “EuroAirport 2030” project. The focus will be on improving service quality, optimizing the infrastructure and taking into account environmental compatibility.
SUMMARY OF 2016 TRAFFIC STATISTICS
Passenger traffic: 7 314 269 passengers used EuroAirport in 2016.
Freight traffic: In 2016, freight activities remained stable at 101 300 tonnes (0%). The freight-only business rose by 13 % to 12 367 tonnes. Trucked freight posted a decline of 11 % to 46 356 tonnes. Express freight increased significantly, reaching 42 577 tonnes (+12 %).
Flight movements (take-offs and landings): The number of flight movements in commercial passenger traffic (scheduled and charter flights) posted only slight growth of near to 1 %, corresponding to 67 % of total flight movements (63 666). Cargo flights went up by 8 %, accounting for 5 % of all flight movements (5 032). General aviation (private aviation) rose by 2 %, corresponding to 23 % of total flight movements.
EuroAirport is served by over 20 scheduled airlines and offers direct flights to over 90 destinations in more than 30 countries. Thanks to the strong presence of airlines that belong to the Star Alliance, oneworld or SkyTeam alliances, EuroAirport can offer several intercontinental connections per day via the main European hubs (London, Paris, Frankfurt, Munich, Amsterdam, Brussels, Madrid, Istanbul and Barcelona).
In the cargo business, EuroAirport ist served by the four main providers in the express freight sector: DHL, FedEx, TNT and UPS. Five major airlines meet the needs of the regional export economy in terms of freight-only business: ABC Airlines to Moscow, Emirates SkyCargo to Dubai, Korean Air to Seoul, Qatar Airlines to Doha and Iberia to Madrid and Latin America.
The business activities of Air Service Basel, AMAC Aerospace and Jet Aviation on the airport site constitute a highly specialized centre of excellence for the refurbishment and maintenance of private aircraft. These companies employ over 2 000 people.
will be on improving service quality, optimizing the infrastructure and taking into account environmental compatibility.