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Thomas Van Asch
Wouter Dewulf
Franziska Kupfer
Hilde Meersman
Evy Onghena
Eddy Van de Voorde


air cargo, airport strategy, airport competitiveness


Historically, airlines and airports considered air cargo as a by-product. However, by looking for additional sources of revenue, airlines and airports became aware of the potential of air cargo. In this study, the competitiveness of European airports with respect to air cargo will be discussed. The relevant characteristics determining the competitiveness of an airport with respect to air cargo are identified by an extensive literature review and by interviews with industry-specialists. These characteristics can be divided into four different components: territory, air cargo marketplace, airport operations and product differentiation. Each component consists of several factors affecting airport competitiveness for cargo. This study can be used by airports to help assessing and enhancing its air cargo strategy, whereas (potential) shareholders are given an additional instrument to check whether an investment in an airport makes would be viable or not.


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