Edmonton International Airport (EIA) saw its cargo volumes growth climb for the sixth consecutive year in 2015 and is set to see a further rise in 2016.
The Canadian gateway has not yet revealed how many tonnes of freight it handled, but president and chief executive officer, Tom Ruth says: “Overall, 2015 was a year of wins in the context of some challenging economic times. Looking at the big picture, we are still Canada’s fastest-growing major airport over the past 10 years.”
Ruth adds the airport is working hard to drive business growth in the region and the airport is a major regional economic driver, creating 12,600 direct and indirect jobs and generating nearly $1.2 billion in gross domestic product (GDP) with total economic output of over $2.2 billion.
EIA saw freighter services upped in 2015 included Air China Cargo, which began a direct service to Shanghai Pudong International Airport and Dallas/Fort Worth Airport, three times a week each direction.
With this, Edmonton became the carrier’s only Canadian destination with scheduled freighter service to mainland China. This new service is forecasted to generate $31 million in GDP for the Edmonton Metro region.
Another major development in 2015 was EIA’s designation as a Foreign Trade Zone, allowing companies to reduce or eliminate normal trade barriers such as tariffs, quotas and compliance costs. This is an initiative of Port Alberta, a collaborative network that works to support industry growth, expand trade and investment, and improve how goods and people flow into and through the Edmonton Region.
Air France-KLM Cargo now also connects EIA with Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. With cargo connections into Europe and Africa via Amsterdam, into Asia via Shanghai and Texas/South America from Dallas, EIA has transatlantic and transpacific routes and becoming a strong Canadian cargo hub option.
Over 250,000 square feet of new cargo facilities were also completed or announced in 2015. Construction of Rosenau Transport’s new 210,000 square foot distribution centre began in 2015. When it opens in spring 2016, it will provide 24-hour ground connections to and from all western Canadian markets.