Brussels Airport ends the year 2011 with over 18.7 million passengers, up about 9% on 2010.
Transfer passenger numbers in particular grew strongly, driven by the ongoing expansion of Brussels Airlines and Star Alliance. The number of transfer passengers increased by more than 30%.
With this result, Brussels Airport positions itself among the strongest growers in the European airport industry, which especially in the past few months has felt the impact of the weakening global economy.
Both the average seat capacity and load factor of the aircraft continue to increase, which is important for the efficient use of the airport infrastructure.
In 2011, Brussels Airport welcomed three new airlines: Qatar Airways, Belle Air and Thai Airways International. 12 new routes were opened.
Cargo traffic at Brussels Airport likewise did well in 2011. Whereas at many European airports, cargo volumes have been declining strongly since the summer, the volume at Brussels Airport remained almost stable with over 470,000 tonnes carried, driven by a strong second semester of 2011.
Major cargo airlines including Korean Air Cargo, Singapore Airlines Cargo, Saudi Airlines Cargo and EVA Airways Cargo invested in additional flights and capacity. DHL integrator traffic recorded a strong growth in 2011.
In 2011, 88 passenger and cargo airlines served 230 different nonstop destinations from Brussels Airport.
The final figures for 2011 will be published in the course of January.