Freight volumes at Leipzig-Halle Airport (LEJ), Europe’s fifth-largest cargo hub, are continuing to grow during the corona crisis. The amount of freight handled in April compared to the previous month rose by seven percent to about 107,671 tonnes. The volume handled between January and April rose by 0.6 percent to 404.987 tonnes, compared to the same period in the previous year. Leipzig/Halle is therefore once again bucking the general trend in Germany during the coronavirus crisis. Cargo tonnage in March across Germany registered a decline of 11.7 percent in March.
The reason for the growth is the high volume of shipments handled by the home carrier, DHL. There were also additional charter flights, operated by Aeroflot and Vietnam Airlines, for example. Freight charter volumes in April in the middle of the corona crisis increased by 25.6 percent. Passenger planes are now being used to handle many cargo flights, too.
Ideal conditions for logistics specialists
The current crisis is demonstrating how important well-functioning air traffic infrastructure is for supplying the population with goods. Leipzig/Halle Airport has a 24-hour operating permit for cargo flights as well as direct links to the trans-European motorway and railway networks in a north-south and east-west direction. As a result, Leipzig/Halle provides ideal conditions for transporting goods by road and rail.
The runway system comprises two parallel runways, both 3,600 meters long, and they can be used independently of each other, even in CAT III b conditions.
PortGround, a subsidiary of Mitteldeutsche Flughafen AG and a company that specializes in handling aircraft and freight, also has CEIV Pharma certification and is therefore in a position to handle time-sensitive and temperature-sensitive pharmaceutical shipments at any time round the clock.
DHL has been operating its European hub at the airport since 2008. It is the largest within its global network and it has already invested EUR 655 million in its construction. Plans are also now being drawn up to extend the infrastructure at the apron area used by DHL, among other things.
Leipzig/Halle Airport is also the home base of AeroLogic, a joint venture involving DHL Express and Lufthansa Cargo.