Dubai is likely to steal Heathrow’s title as the world’s busiest international airport, according to a senior executive for the British Airports Authority (BAA). Simon Baugh told Dubai newspaper 7Days that the London hub simply cannot compete with the growth of Dubai. Heathrow Airport, which is currently struggling to win government approval to add a third runway, welcomed 69.5 million passengers last year. 50 million passed through Dubai International Airport and airport officials are confident numbers will outstrip London by 2016.
“Even with a third runway, with the space Dubai has it’s not possible. Its growth is too big,” Baugh commented, “Dubai’s a passenger transfer hub where the world connects.”
Dubai is forecast to cater for 90 million passengers by 2020 and by 2027, the emirate’s second airport, Al Maktoum International, is expected to become the largest cargo and passenger hub in the world. Topping the global charts will not only further cement Dubai’s importance on the world map, it will undoubtedly have a positive knock on effect on the city’s tourism and hotel industry.