Cardiff Airport passengers up 9% since Welsh government takeover

Cardiff Airport

By Brian Meechan BBC Wales business correspondent

The Welsh government spent £52m buying the airport in 2013

Cardiff Airport has seen a 9% increase in the number of its passengers since it was taken over by the Welsh government last year, it has been revealed.

Ministers bought the facility last March for £52m amid concerns about investment by its then Spanish owners.

Since May 2013, the business has seen 10 months of continuous growth.

By the end of March, managers hope to break the one million passenger mark for the financial year.

In total, passenger numbers between May to February represents an increase of 10.6% on the same period the previous year.

The positive passenger figures come as the airport undergoes refurbishment of its terminal building, including changes to the to the check-in hall and security area.

The Welsh government has given the airport a £10m loan repayable over a 12 year period for renovations.

New routes and carriers have also been added recently including Cityjet flying to Glasgow and Paris.

CityJet is also starting routes to Edinburgh and Jersey this month and said it may look to expand services in future.

Cardiff airport
Refurbishment of the terminal building is well underway – funded with a £10m loan from the Welsh government

The airline, a partner of Air France and KLM, started to fly from Cardiff in January after Flybe dropped its routes.

During the 12 months to March 2013, 997,000 passengers used the airport. For the year to the end of this month, the airport is expecting to handle 1,080,000 passengers.

Jon Horne, Cardiff Airport’s Chief Executive, said: “It is a solid start to the work that needs to be done to deliver continued growth over the coming years.

“The past year has seen lots of change for the better, resulting in an upturn in passenger numbers that began within just 6 weeks of acquisition by the Welsh government.

“More capacity and new services have contributed to the 10 months’ consecutive growth the airport has reported.

“There’s much more to be done, but I’m confident we’re on the right track with a strong team in place, committed to delivering on our growth strategy.”

Sourced from BBC Wales News

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