ACI Europe , an association that promotes the interests of European airports and stimulates excellence in the management of the same, has reported a “continuous and solid trend” of traffic growth of goods transported to European airports during last April , 3.9% more than the same month in 2017.

In April the number of flights dedicated exclusively to the transport of goods also increased: + 3.5%.

European airports say that the treated goods flow has increased by 3.4%. In non-European airports there is an increase of even 6.7%.

The most popular European hubs in April were those in Frankfurt (1.5% year-on-year increase with 179 thousand tonnes), Paris Charles de Gaulle (down 1.5% and 160 thousand tonnes) , London Heathrow (increase of 2.3% and 137 thousand tons) and Amsterdam Schipol (which recorded a negative decrease of 6.3% with a total of 137 thousand tons).

The Ataturk gateway in Istanbul is ranked fifth, with a substantial increase in goods handled: + 15% reaching 110 thousand tons in April 2018)

For the current year (data from January to April), air freight traffic passing through European airports increased by 4.3% compared to the four months of the previous year.

Dnata , one of the largest air service providers, has exercised the option of acquiring a further 40% of the shares of Airport Handling SPA .

The purchase will bring 70% of the dnata shareholding in the handling company based in Milan. With a majority on the board, dnata already manages the daily operations from 2016, the year of the initial investment.

Airport Handling , founded in 2014, provides numerous passenger services, ramp services and baggage assistance services to over 60 airlines in the two airports of Milan, Malpensa (MXP) and Linate (LIN). The further investment of dnata in Airport Handling, underlines its great commitment in the Italian market, where it also manages, in 22 airports, numerous catering facilities.

Stewart Angus, Divisional Senior Vice President for International Airport Operations & Associated Companies, said: ” After more than two years of successful collaboration and excellent services for our customers, we are pleased to announce an additional investment in Airport Handling. We are sure that dnata and our stakeholders will benefit many from this strategic acquisition , which highlights our broader vision and our commitment to the Italian market . We will work hard to continue to offer a quality service, without equal, to all our customers, looking for new opportunities in the country “.

Although the participation of dnata will increase to 70%, the current management group will continue to manage, as before, the business and operations.

In the last seven years, dnata has significantly expanded international airport operations with a series of partnerships and acquisitions. dnata provides over 300 airlines with reliable, quality ground handling services, cargo and catering services at 130 airports across 6 continents.