Amsterdam, the Netherlands, Thursday 22nd July 2021: Half year cargo figures for Amsterdam Airport Schiphol show increased throughput year-on-year, with inbound freight tonnage up an average of 29.5 percent and outbound up 25.7 percent compared to the first six months of 2020.

Schiphol processed 837,671 tonnes of cargo from January to June 2021, up 27.7 percent on the same period last year, with 572,111 tonnes on freighter flights, up 23.4 percent on the first half of last year and 265,560 tonnes in bellyhold, up 38.10 percent on the same period last year.

Pre-pandemic cargo figures for the first six months of 2019 were 385,319 tonnes for inbound and 382,200 tonnes for outbound cargo.

Full freighter flights for the first six months of 2021 were up 23.5 percent year-on-year at 12,691 flights, with bellyhold flights down 30.6 percent at 73,346 flights.

Pre-pandemic figures for the first half of 2019 were 412,372 tonnes carried on 6,938 full freighter flights and 355,147 tonnes carried on 235,169 passenger flights.

Schiphol has been facing capacity shortages for freighters due to slot restrictions, a situation which the airport is working to resolve with the Dutch Government and cargo community.

“The figures demonstrate that cargo remains important, not only for Schiphol and its local air freight community, but also for the economy of the Netherlands,” said Anne Marie van Hemert, Head of Aviation Business Development.

“We seek to find a joint solution to the slot issue.”

New cargo strategy

The results are posted as Head of Aviation Business Development Anne Marie van Hemert commits to working with the Schiphol Cargo Community to shape Europe’s ‘smartest cargo hub’, with a new strategy focused on sustainability, efficiency, and digitisation.

“It is no secret that the Schiphol Cargo community was facing big challenges before anyone had ever heard of COVID-19,” said van Hemert.

“But despite the pandemic we have continued to work on the issues that matter most to our cargo community, and we are ready to move forward towards a better future for every member of the air cargo chain.

“There are big challenges ahead, but we have everything in place to succeed by working together.”

Cargo team

Schiphol appointed two Cargo Partnership Directors after finalising a restructure, which has led to the creation of a new Aviation Business Development Division under Airport Operations and Aviation Partnerships.

Olaf Van Reeden and David Van der Meer have joined Roos Bakker to shape and develop cargo processes at Schiphol, bringing together all airline and cargo commercial and operational businesses at the airport.

They report into Hélène van Riemsdijk-Schouten, Manager Airline and Cargo Partnerships, who reports to van Hemert.

“The future of Schiphol Cargo will be about collaboration and the Cargo Partnership Directors are focused on re-connecting with the cargo community and moving towards the future with plenty of energy,” said van Riemsdijk-Schouten.

“Our aim is to optimise top connectivity, realise state-of-the-art digitalisation, create a green airport, orchestrate seamless cargo processes, and deploy empowered partnerships.”

Going Green and digitising

Under the new strategy, Schiphol will continue to drive its Smart Cargo Mainport Program (SCMP) and finalise the renewal of Cargonaut’s Port Community System (PCS) over coming months.

Going Green is one of the airport’s core strategy pillars, and Schiphol will continue to support schemes such as the Milk Run, where forwarders’ truck collections from handling agents are replaced by a single delivery from the handling agent to multiple forwarders’ facilities.

Schiphol will also continue working with the Holland Flower Alliance and the Circular Plastics Alliance to use standardised boxes for flowers and help reduce waste.

Optimising connectivity

The strategy’s ‘optimising connectivity’ pillar puts an emphasis on the team working with the cargo community and local government towards resolving the hub’s slots issues.

“We have got capacity challenges at Schiphol, but we are working hard to secure solutions,” said van Hemert.

“Making this a strategic pillar means it will continue to be a core priority.”

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