Jordan’s Queen Alia International Airport saw growth in passenger numbers accelerate in June, suggesting that travellers are regaining confidence following regional political instability early in the year.
Airport International Group (AIG), the Jordanian company operating and developing the airport, has overseen an average 12 percent growth in passenger numbers annually over the last three years, which has dramatically increased revenue flow to the government.
In June, over 500,000 passengers used Queen Alia International Airport, a 3.8 percent increase from the same period in 2010, which was a strong year for airport traffic. That compares with a 0.8 percent on-year growth for the previous five months combined.
The latest figures available for other airports in the region show that many saw reduction in passenger traffic in the first four months of the year.
AIG is investing US$800 million in a state-of-the-art terminal, which is due to open next year, to accommodate the rapid increase in passenger numbers and expected growth in coming years.
The first phase of the new terminal project will be completed in 2012, with airport capacity lifted to 7 million passengers per annum from its current capacity of 3.5 million. AIG will continue to enhance and expand the airport as needed, gradually increasing passenger capacity toward the 12 million passengers per year.
Since 2007, when AIG entered into the partnership with the government of Jordan for the management of QAIA under a 25-year concession agreement, passenger traffic has risen to 5.4 million annually from 3.8 million. AIG has negotiated an increase in flights to over 650 per week, from around 400 flights in 2007.
Several airlines have increased flight frequency or added flights, including Royal Jordanian, Easy Jet, Air Arabia, Austrian Airlines, Alitalia, Vueling, FlyDubai, airBaltic, Iberia and Tarom Romanian. The airport has also welcomed new charter services by Air Mediterranee, MINT Airways, XL Airways.