The King Shaka International Airport in KwaZulu-Natal continued to experience steady growth in passenger volumes over the December festive season, with international passenger volumes up by 9% and domestic passenger volumes up by 12%, Dube TradePort Corporation reported this week.
Dube TradePort is a designated special economic zone (SEZ) geared to promote foreign and local investment.
The airport is located on the Dube TradePort precinct.
Over the three quarters to December 31, the airport recorded growth of 7.5% and 7.4% for international and domestic passenger volumes, respectively.
The airport facilitated the journeys of more than 616 000 passengers arriving and departing during December, up from 553 000 for the same period the previous year.
“This growth is a direct result of intensive collaboration with our airline partners and tourism authorities, provincial and local government, as well as other members that form part of Durban Direct initiative that is responsible for facilitating the establishment of new regional and international air services to and from Durban,” Dube TradePort SEZ CEO and Durban Direct co-chairperson Hamish Erskine said.
Since establishing the route development programme in August 2014, Durban Direct has successfully secured six new routes. Durban is now connected to over 700 destinations globally through its current airline partners operating from the airport.
TACKLING CLIMATE CHANGE
Dube TradePort has also been hard at work acquiring and rehabilitating 200 ha of wetlands within the precinct.
In addition, in line with the National Development Plan, Dube TradePort and its key partners eThekwini municipality and sugar producer Tongaat Hulett are well into Phase 2 implementation of its Climate Resilience Framework memorandum of agreement (MoA).
As part of this MoA, the parties have committed to a development approach for their respective landholdings within the Northern Development Area that builds resilience into their spatial planning and infrastructure development.
In line with the framework, Dube TradePort is now prioritising the acquisition of land parcels that have critical biodiversity assets such as grasslands and wetlands.
This is informed particularly by the understanding that grasslands and wetlands account for about 65% of the terrestrial and aquatics carbon stocks.