Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Changi Airport handled a record 37.7 million passengers in 2008

SINGAPORE: Singapore's Changi Airport handled 2.7 per cent more passengers last year, compared with 2007.

Propelled by good numbers in the first few months of last year, Changi serviced a record 37.7 million passengers in 2008.

Both the regional and long-haul sectors grew, with passengers heading to destinations like Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam, Australia, Germany and the United Kingdom.

However, traffic to Thailand and China fell.

According to the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS), the financial tsunami left its mark in the last few months of 2008.

Changi Airport's passenger traffic was down in the months of September, November and December due to negative sentiment and decreased travel demand.

The impact of the economic crisis though was more pronounced on the cargo front.

Airfreight movements dipped two per cent year-on-year to register 1.86 million tonnes in 2008.

Director-General and Chief Executive Officer of the CAAS, Lim Kim Choon, said Changi Airport had performed "commendably" despite the difficult economic climate.

However, he said 2009 would be a challenging year, with airlines and airport partners facing a tough operating environment.

Mr Lim said CAAS is committed to helping its partners ride out the downturn through schemes such as the extension of the Air Hub Development Fund.

As at 1 January 2009, Changi Airport is served by 83 airlines operating more than 4,670 weekly scheduled flights to 190 cities in 60 countries.

- CNA/yb

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