Passenger numbers topped 26 million for the first time ever in 2015. Photo: Ty Stange/Copenhagen Media Center
The numbers marked the fifth straight year of passenger growth at the airport, which CEO Thomas Woldbye said was particularly boosted by an increase in international travellers.
Woldbye said that the airport is well on its way to hitting its goal of servicing 40 million passengers per year.
“Another record seemed unlikely in the first half of the year, but a strong second half saw us surge past 26 million passengers for the very first time. Passengers in the second half were also more satisfied with our service offering than ever before, leading to increased revenue from the airport’s shopping centre,” he said.
According to the airport statement, revenue from the shopping centre increased by 7.7 percent in 2015, while parking revenue grew by 3.8 percent.
Total revenue at the airport exceeded four billion kroner in 2015, increasing five percent over the previous year.
Woldbye also touted the airport’s investments, which included widening a major runway to accommodate the world’s largest passenger plane, the Airbus 380, a revamp of the passenger areas in Terminal 2 and the addition of two security lanes to facilitate passenger flow.
Labour leaders, however, pointed out that much of the airport’s success was due to airlines Ryanair and Qatar Airways, which have been criticized by the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) for giving their employees substandard working conditions.
Danish unions and politicians clashed with the self-styled low fares airline throughout 2015, accusing the company of social dumping and violating the Danish model of working conditions for employees. Ryanair countered by criticising union action as ‘secondary strikes,’ pointing out that none of its pilots or cabin crew were members of Danish unions. The feud eventually led to Ryanair relocating its Copenhagen base to Lithuania and withdrawing services from Billund Airports, albeit only briefly in the case of the latter.
ITF spokesman Gabriel Mochom told trade union magazine Fagbladet 3F that Qatar Airways are ever worse, with the airline firing pregnant women and forbidding female attendants from getting married during the first five years they work for the company.
“Qatar Airway’s growth in Denmark might be good news for the company, but is it good news for the people who actually work for the firm?” Mochom asked Fagbladet 3F.
Neither Qatar Airways nor Copenhagen Airport wished to comment on the company’s working conditions, Fagbladet 3F said.