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Despite the enforced 45-day closure of one of its two runways for refurbishment work, Dubai International Airport (DXB) welcomed 41.3 million passengers in the first half of 2019 to maintain its status as the world’s busiest international airport by traffic volumes.

The closure of its southern runway meant that passenger traffic at the airport was actually 5.6% down on the same period a year ago, but DXB’s loss was Dubai World Central’s gain as most flights were reallocated to DWC during the rehabilitation project and the switch resulted in its passenger volumes soaring by 14.1%.

DXB red sky

In his mid-year report, Dubai Airports CEO, Paul Griffiths, described the first half of 2019 as “fast paced and action packed”, noting that it began with the launch of the dynamic new DXB brand and included installing the Middle East’s largest solar electricity system on the roof of Terminal 2.

The solar energy system comprises 15,000 photovoltaic panels and is expected to reduce DXB’s CO2 emissions by 3,000 tonnes annually and reduce the airport’s electricity costs by around $900,000 each year.

India remained DXB’s top destination country by passenger numbers, with traffic for the first half reaching 5.7 million customers – propelled mainly by top city destinations Mumbai and Delhi.

Saudi Arabia was number two on the list with 3.1 million customers, followed closely by the United Kingdom with 2.8 million customers. The top three destinations by city were London, Mumbai and Jeddah.


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