Dubai International Airport to remain main hub for next 10 years

Al Maktoum International Airport was expected to become the emirate’s main aviation hub into the 2020s



Dubai International (DXB) will continue to operate as the main airport in the emirate for the next 10 years as plans to migrate to Dubai World Central are put on hold, according to a senior executive from Dubai Airports.

“The decision has been taken to stay at DXB for the next 10 years, and DWC [Dubai World Central] will be used for cargo and other passenger airlines,” Anita Mehra Homayoun, SVP communication and reputation at Dubai Airports, said at the opening of the second Airport Solutions Dubai conference on Monday.

DXB, which handled 8.37 million passengers in August – the single biggest month in the airport’s history, is continuing to expand.

The airport is also set to undertake the southern runway refurbishment project next year from April 16 until May 30, 2019, which will reduce capacity.

The 45-day runway closure is expected to reduce capacity by up to 43 per cent and will see home carriers Emirates and flydubai operate some routes out of DWC.

Read more: Flydubai to operate some flights from DWC during airport refurbishment

Dubai International Airport traffic expected to reduce 43% during runway closure

Meanwhile, it was also reported last week that the expansion of Al Maktoum International Airport at DWC – intended to handle 120 million passengers a year by 2025 – has been delayed.

The airport, which opened to passenger traffic in 2013, was expected to become Dubai’s main hub and the new base of Emirates.

However, five sources told Reuters that the expansion had been delayed, without stating the reason. Two sources said the project was being redesigned.

Dubai secured a $3bn loan last year to develop the airport last year. Overall, the emirate is anticipated to spend around $36bn on Al Maktoum International and DWC.

Read more: Dubai’s $36bn Al Maktoum airport expansion put on hold

Dubai closes $3bn of financing for airports expansion