Monday, May 22, 2006

Airport freight traffic soars

The total freight traffic handled by domestic airports grew close to 10 per cent during April-March 2005-06 compared to the previous period.
The latest data collated by the Airports Authority of India (AAI) show that while the total freight traffic touched 14,03,944 tonnes during April-March 2005-06 compared to 12,80,270 tonnes last year.
The major increases were noticed at Tiruchi, which registered a whopping growth of 114.8 per cent, having handled 713 tonnes (332 tonnes) of freight during April-March 2005-06. Similarly, Bangalore handled 138,852 tonnes during April-March 2005-06 compared to 112,374 tonnes, recording a growth of 23.6 per cent while Chennai that handled 2,05,971 tonnes this year against 1,85,870 tonnes last year, recorded a growth of 10.8 per cent. The other airports that recorded major increase in freight traffic include Patna (37.2 per cent) and Delhi (11.2 per cent).
However, there were a few airports such as Kochi, Visakhapatnam and Madurai that recorded a decline during April-March 2005-06 compared to the previous period. While Visakhapatnam handled 504 tonnes of freight down from 670 tonnes during April-March 2004-05 thereby registering a decline of 24.8 per cent, Madurai registered a decline of 15.9 per cent having handled 361 tonnes during April-March 2005-06 compared to 429 tonnes. Similarly, Kochi that handled 21,237 tonnes during March-April 2005-06, registered a decline of 4.2 per cent over the previous year.
22/05/06 Ashwini Phadnis/Hindu Business Line