Dubai International Airport is the fastest growing airport in the world, as measured by annual seat capacity growth, according to the latest statistics from OAG, the aviation intelligence body.
The airport’s growth has been largely fuelled by Emirates’ ongoing expansion – during the last year, the airline has added nine new destinations, equating to nearly 22,000 additional seats every day.
Capacity has also increased significantly on a number of existing routes, including the Dubai International-London Heathrow service, which became an all-A380 operation in December 2012.
The OAG FACTS (Frequency and Capacity Trend Statistics) report for April shows that 757,000 additional seats will be available from Dubai International Airport in April 2013 compared to April 2012. Figures also show that the Middle Eastern hub has increased capacity by an average of 12 per cent per year since 2004.
The second fastest growing airport in terms of seat capacity is Kuala Lumpur International Airport, which has added 552,000 seats in the last year.
Istanbul Atatürk Airport – recently named the fastest growing airport of 2012 as measured by annual passenger numbers – is placed third, having seen the number of seats rise by 529,000 between April 2012 and April 2013, and much like Dubai/Emirates, has profited from a spike in new routes from Turkish Airlines.
Indonesia’s Jakarta International Airport, which was initially designed to handle 22 million passengers but is currently operating at more than double that capacity, is fourth on the list of airports that have added the most seats over the last 12 months.
John Grant, executive vice president, OAG said: “As airports in the Middle East and Asia-Pacific press ahead with capacity expansion plans, flag carriers and low-cost airlines will continue to add seats, meaning the east is very likely to continue to outstrip the west in terms of increasing overall seat capacity in the coming months and years.”