Leipzig/Halle Airport: a multimodal hub for flows of goods between Asia and Europe
As the fifth-largest cargo hub in Europe and a handling centre with dynamic growth for all types of air freight, Leipzig/Halle Airport forms a central element in the air freight infrastructure within the Federal Republic of Germany and is a powerful driving force in the logistics and business region in Central Germany. With more than 8,600 people employed by over 100 local companies and public authorities at the site, the airport acts as a powerhouse for developments with huge importance for the local economy and it offers its users planning and investment reliability in the long term too.
Asia and China in particular are important growth markets for Leipzig/Halle Airport and its customers. As an intermodal hub for flows of goods to and from Europe, the airport, which is directly linked to the trans-European road and rail networks in a north-south and an east-west direction, offers ideal conditions for companies closely associated with the air freight and logistics sectors. Theyinclude a 24-hour operating permit for cargo flights and a freight handling railway station, which is connected to seaports via daily goods trains. It is also possible for trucks to reach destinations in 15 different European countries in just eight hours.
On average, as many as 120 flights currently operate between Leipzig/Halle Airport and about 20 destinations in the Asian region every week. They include Shanghai Pudong, Hong Kong, Zhengzhou as well as Bangkok, Tokyo Narita, Delhi, Seoul Incheon, Singapore, Bahrain and Dubai. More than half the weekly flights to Asia operate to and from China.
Leipzig/Halle also maintains cooperation arrangements with well-known partners like the Shenzhen Airport Group, the Shanghai Airport Authority as well as Kansai International Airport in Japan and the Henan Province Airport Group in China.
Leipzig/Halle Airport also signed a memorandum of understanding coveringfuture cooperation with the Hubei Provincial Communications Investment Group, the largest public-sector company in the province of Hubei, and SF Express, a leading private express logistics specialist in China, last year. The planned cooperation arrangement covers an intense exchange of experiences in planning, constructing and operating a cargo airport – as well as a strategic partnership in the fields of international air freight and logistics services and an exchange of personnel. Leipzig/Halle Airport is set to play an outstanding role in future flows of goods from the province of Hubei.
Mitteldeutsche Flughafen AG is also involved in the German-Sino trade association, which has been supporting the bilateral relations between Germany and China for more than 30 years. As a result of the formation of the DCW Region Central Germany in 2017, a network has been created or enlarged in the region to promote communications and cooperation between the German and Chinese economies.
“Our presence at the “transport logistic China” is one of the most important dates in the sector for our company every year. As one of the air freight hubs with the most dynamic growth in the world, we make use of this leading trade fair on the Asian continent as an ideal platform to present our services as a modern, multimodal airport at the heart of Europe in this important growth market. We’re also exhibiting our strengths as a logistics specialist that is able to handle a wide variety of services and offer an attractive investment base to a broad specialist audience and potential customers,” Johannes Jähn, Spokesman for the Board of Mitteldeutsche Flughafen AG and Managing Director of Flughafen Leipzig/halle GmbH, explains
Express traffic, freight charter and logistics services
As the central hub for DHL – the company has so far invested about EUR 655 million in building and expansion work – Leipzig/Halle Airport is one of the most important handling centres for express freight in Europe. Volumes of freight in this business have been continuing to grow for years – not least because of the dynamic developments in the e-commerce sector.
The freight charter flight segment is also developing well beyond average and particularly in the field of e-commerce and heavy and oversized consignments; the airport and its partners have special expertise in providing professional handling services for them.
The aim is also to press ahead with the positive developments in the freight charter sector. This is possible thanks to the implementation of the coalition agreement between the parties in the German federal government, which states that the time required for permits for incoming and outgoing ad-hoc freight charter flights must be reduced in order to abolish competitive disadvantages with other EU countries.
Customers using the airport have the opportunity of making use of many services at the airport in the fields of logistics, air freight handling and aircraft handling from one source through PortGround, one of Leipzig/Halle Airport’s affiliated companies; these services cover the complete supply chain. This company also operates a refrigerated warehouse at the World Cargo Center and this has direct access to the apron area. This facility can accommodate complete aircraft loads in three different refrigerated zones. When this unit was put into service last year, certification of the warehouse area was also obtained in line with the “Good Distribution Practice” (GDP) European guidelines. The airport is also seeking to gain IATA “CEIV” certification and this includes the complete supply chain for transporting high-value pharmaceutical products. PortGround is also certified as a Regulated Agent and an Authorised Economic Operator.
Leipzig/Halle Airport: 24/7 operations for cargo flights, direct links to the trans-European road and railway networks, generous space and capacity opportunities and comprehensive logistics services from one source
Leipzig/Halle Airport is the fifth-largest air cargo hub in Europe and handled more than 1.14 million tonnes of freight in 2017.
More than 60 cargo airlines regularly use the airport every year and fly to over 200 destinations around the globe. DHL has been operating its European hub at the airport since 2008. Leipzig/ Halle Airport is also the home base for AeroLogic, a joint venture operated by DHL Express and Lufthansa Cargo.
Two Antonov 124-100 aircraft have been permanently stationed at Leipzig/ Halle since March 2006 as part of the SALIS Project (Strategic Airlift International Solution).
The airport is also the base for a subsidiary of the Volga-Dnepr Group, Aircraft Maintenance and Engineering Service GmbH (AMTES GmbH), which has a maintenance basis for Antonov 124 and western aircraft at the airport. Regular freight charter flights and a scheduled link to Moscow operated by Air Bridge Cargo are also available.
Generous space and capacity opportunities
There are several hundred hectares of building land available next to and near the airport; building rights already exist for parts of this land and this provides ideal conditions and long-term planning and investment reliability for companies closely associated with the air freight and logistics sectors.