Turkey's Istanbul Airport may emerge as Europe's busiest hub, overtaking London's Heathrow in the post-COVID-19 period, an aviation analyst told British media.
Ralph Anker told Britain's The Independent website late Tuesday that "airports in western Europe have lost a far higher proportion of passengers than their rivals in the east – Russia, Turkey and Ukraine."
"While airports like Heathrow, which rely predominantly on international traffic, will recover eventually, by the time they do Istanbul's new unconstrained mega-airport is likely to have established itself as Europe's busiest airport," he told the outlet.
The article said that Istanbul Airport "is expected to be capable of processing 200 million passengers annually within a few years."
Turkey's Istanbul Airport maintained its lead in European traffic charts with 604 flights on April 14, the European Organization for the Safety of Air Navigation (Eurocontrol) said last weekend.
According to its latest flight traffic report, Istanbul Airport was followed by Paris Charles de Gaulle with 478 flights, Frankfurt with 474 and Amsterdam with 451.
Madrid Barajas Airport came fifth with 414 daily flights, followed by Sabiha Gokcen Airport, also in Istanbul, with 345 flights.
Seven of the top 10 airports in Europe saw a fall in traffic over the last two weeks back to the pre-Easter break level, it said.
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