The numbers translate into 10.5% year-on-year growth, in line with the 10.2% increase in seat capacity that was also achieved due to the new routes registered. Aircraft movements also went up by 9.1% over last year, while the average seat load factor succeeded in remaining consistent, with a marginal increase of 0.2%.
M.I.A.'s airline partners continued to perform well throughout 2013. Air Malta registering a 6% increase in passenger movements, Ryanair an increase of 19.3% and Lufthansa an increase of 27.2%. Good performance was also registered by newly introduced WizzAir and Turkish Airlines.
The U.K. market achieved the second largest traffic growth, registering an increase of 50,500 passenger movements mainly driven by London, Liverpool and Edinburgh airports, with Gatwick achieving a 4.1% growth in traffic. Significant growth was also registered in the Italian market, increasing by 17.8% mainly due to the launch of the Bergamo route by Ryanair.
The German market grew by 7.8% which is attributed to an increase in seat capacity mainly driven by Lufthansa on the Frankfurt route. The French market performed well, recording an increase of 11.5% in passenger movements, half of which were attributed to the new Transavia route from Paris. The market conditions in Spain were reflected in a slight decrease of passenger movements of 1.7%.
"The outlook for 2014 remains positive. Seat capacity is being forecast to grow by approximately 2.5%, resulting in an estimated throughput of 4.1 million passengers, which translates to a 2% increase in traffic over 2013," MIA CEO Markus Klaushofer said.
(Source: maltatoday.com.mt, 23-Jan-2014)