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NEWS Last modified on March 5, 2015

DHL to have express cargo base at Istanbul's new super hub

DHL has signed a memorandum of understanding to make Istanbul's planned €10.2 billion super hub its regional hub for express cargo.

The deal with IGA Havalimani Isletmesi AS will lead to DHL moving into a 20,000sqm express cargo and logistics area at the new gateway when it opens in 2017.

Soner Akkurt, CCO of IGA Havalimani Isletmesi AS, said: “IGA is building the Istanbul New Airport not only to serve as a hub for passengers and airline companies, but also as a global centre for cargo and logistics companies.

"The MoU signed with DP DHL, the largest cargo company in Turkey and one of the leading brands in the world, is another step in that direction and will lead to the construction and operation of a 20,000sqm Regional Operation Centre, complete with support facilities, and space for further expansion."

Akkurt added: "In January, we have signed a very significant, probably the biggest Duty Free Agreement with Gebr Heinemann – Unifree.

"We are now laying the stones in another part of the business, to cooperate with DP DHL, a very esteemed business partner. These are all very important steps in the right direction that reaffirm the international significance of the Istanbul New Airport and also verify the validity of our plans.”

Mustafa Tonguç, DHL's vice president of operations for DHL Turkey, noted that the decision to move to the new airport followed the announcement of its new ‘Focus Strategy 2020’ at the end of 2014. 

He said: “According to our new business focus, Turkey is one of the 11 countries that DP DHL will prioritiae for new expansion and investments.

"As Turkey is positioned in an excellent geographical location, DHL Express is intending to further invest at least €60 million nto a new Regional Hub connecting express cargo between the Asia, Middle East and Europe.

"The new planned airport at the northern Black Sea shore of Istanbul on its European side is a great opportunity, as there is no night curfew like many other European airports. Therefore we are happy that DHL Express and IGA has signed a memorandum of understanding to drive this project to reality."

Located 35 kilometres from the centre of Istanbul on a 7,650-hectare site close to the Black Sea, the gateway will replace Atatürk Airport and provide the capacity needed to support the continued rapid growth of air traffic and the hub operations of Turkish Airlines. 

And with the bulk of flights expected to approach the airport from the Black Sea, it is anticipated that the new airport could enjoy 24-hours-a-day operating status.

Funded by the İGA Havalimanı İşletmesi AS consortium, which in May won the concession to build and operate the airport for a period of 25 years, the six-runway gateway is set to be delivered in four phases over the coming decades.

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