Heathrow Airport posted its 22nd consecutive month of record freight growth in May as it handled 144,000 tonnes – a rise of 0.5 per cent on May 2017.
In the first five months of the year, the gateway handled 702,120 tonnes, a 3.1 per cent rise on the same period in 2017 and on a rolling 12-month basis it has processed 1.7 million tonnes, a 7.9 per cent uplift on the previous 12 months.
In May, long-haul markets were the fastest growing for cargo, with Japan (28 per cent) and Brazil (33 per cent) taking the top spots.
Last month, Heathrow welcomed the arrival of new direct services to the cities of Wuhan and Sanya, operated by China Southern that boost freight figures from China. The airport’s connection to Sanya is a first for Europe. The routes will allow for 6,000 tonnes of additional cargo capacity.
The freight growth comes as the UK Government announced plans to vote in Parliament within the next few weeks on expansion at the UK hub, which wants to build a third runway.
The airport said support for the project remains “overwhelming” and the latest polling shows 75 per cent of MPs back expansion at Heathrow, alongside a “united chorus” of support from Britain’s major business groups and trade unions and more local people who support than oppose.
Heathrow chief executive officer, John Holland-Kaye said: “We have a robust plan to expand Britain’s hub airport, unlocking billions in growth and creating tens of thousands of new skilled jobs – from Plymouth to Perth and Swansea to Southend.
“With strong cross-party support and a united voice from business and unions – MPs must finally seize the opportunity to expand Heathrow and secure a prosperous future for all of Britain.”