Halifax Stanfield Geared for Future Growth as a Gateway to Canada
At its annual public meeting today, Halifax International Airport Authority (HIAA) reflected on 2017 as a year of significant accomplishments, with the airport well positioned for future growth in 2018 and beyond.
“Last year was memorable for many reasons, with record-breaking passenger and cargo activity,” said Joyce Carter, HIAA President & CEO. “In addition to achieving these operational milestones, we invested $30 million in the maintenance and improvement of the airport’s infrastructure to augment safety and security, enhance the airport experience, support growth, and improve efficiency and productivity.”
In 2017, total revenues rose to $100.2 million. The dominant factors that accounted for this growth included an increase in passenger traffic, which helped drive continued growth in parking revenue, increased earnings from concessions, and improved commercial revenue. Expenses totaled $95.3 million in 2017. The increase was primarily driven by increased depreciation and higher ground lease rent.
Overall, revenues exceeded expenses in 2017 by $4.9 million. This is before accounting for the non-cash impact of HIAA’s defined benefit pension plan. These results are representative of the modest surplus that HIAA targets each year to provide for unanticipated economic or weather events. Under HIAA’s mandate, this surplus will be reinvested in airport operations and development to improve facilities and services.
Passenger numbers saw considerable growth in 2017, increasing 4.5 per cent to a record 4,083,188 passengers served. “For the first time in our airport’s history, we surpassed the four million passenger milestone, thanks to our airline partners and passengers,” said Carter. “We expect another record-breaking year in 2018, and remain committed to collaborating with airlines, industry and tourism agencies to support their mandates and achieve future growth.”
It was also a record-setting year for cargo, with 34,051 metric tonnes shipped from the airport, representing a 2.2 per cent increase over 2016. The Canadian dollar value of cargo exports from Halifax Stanfield was close to $446 million, an increase of 10.2 per cent over the previous year.
As part of HIAA’s 2017-2021 Strategic Plan, work will continue on evolving the airport into a Gateway to Canada. As airlines add newest generation aircraft to their fleets, Halifax Stanfield will be using its enviable position as the closest continental airport in North America to Europe to its advantage. HIAA will continue to market the airport to airlines looking to implement new nonstop flights to and from Europe, with feed from services in Canada and the United States.
With demand for new nonstop passenger and cargo air services expected to increase, HIAA will continue to invest in the airport, with further upgrades and enhancements to the airfield, terminal building and security infrastructure.
HIAA will also continue to undertake an entrepreneurial approach in the provision of amenities to employees, passengers and other visitors to the airport. Several new concessions opened in the terminal building in 2017, with more offerings to come in 2018.
“Our success is the result of the wonderful support that we receive from our many partners who share our vision to develop our airport as a Gateway to Canada, where connecting means the world,” Carter concluded.
To view HIAA’s 2017 annual report online click here.