Belgium’s airports report over 35 million passengers for the first time ever
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    Belgium’s airports report over 35 million passengers for the first time ever

    © Belga

    Belgium’s five airports totalled 35.5 million passengers last year, which is 2.4% more than in 2018 and an all-time record.

    Three airports, Zaventem, Charleroi and Antwerp, bettered their own records.

    Charleroi Airport (BSCA) was the last to communicate its figures, which it did on Thursday. Its tally for 2019 was 8.22 million travellers, 2% more than the previous year.

    On Wednesday, Brussels Airport had also announced a record year, with its passenger traffic increasing by 2.8% to end the year on 26.4 million travellers.

    Antwerp Airport had a record 306,330 passengers (+2.6%), while Ostend registered an even larger increase, ending the year with a total of 457,423 passengers (+8.9%), its third-best annual tally ever.

    Passenger traffic at Liege Airport was stable – just over 170,000 travellers – but the airport had a record year in terms of freight.

    Meanwhile, the national record for annual air freight, over 1.6 million tonnes of goods, set in 2018, was not broken last year. The sector is particularly sensitive to the economic slowdown and 2019 saw the continuation of the trade war between China and the United States.

    The country’s top airport in terms of freight, Liege, registered 3.6% growth, with 902,480 tonnes of goods transported through it, but the cargo handled by Brussels Airport, 667,220 tonnes, was 8.8% less than in 2018.

    Oscar Schneider
    The Brussels Times