United Parcel Service (UPS), a world-known American multinational package delivery and supply chain management company, announced yesterday that it will expand its air operations in Turkey with a new facility to be established at the Istanbul New Airport, which will be the world's largest airport once completed.
The U.S. giant said the new facility will effectively connect customers in Turkey with the regions in the rest of the world via UPS's intercontinental air hub in Cologne, Germany. The new facility is planned to be four times larger than the UPS facility at Istanbul Atatürk International Airport and set to open before the end of 2018.
Istanbul's colossal new airport is expected to formally open to air traffic on Oct. 29.
The first stage of the new airport, which has taken 42 months to complete, will serve 90 million passengers annually. It will accommodate 3,500 takeoffs and landings per day.
Moreover, the airport will have 100,000 square meters of living space, a 25,000-capacity parking area, 143 boarding bridges, a 42-kilometer baggage system and cargo capacity for 5.5 million tons of freight.
Planned as the largest airport in the world, it will have a 150 million annual passenger capacity once the last expansion stage is complete, but could eventually be expanded to handle 200 million annual passengers.
Daniel Carrera, the president of UPS East Europe District, said UPS's export volume in Europe has increased by more than 15 percent last year, adding that their operation in Turkey made a significant contribution to this growth. "Cross-border trade is predicted to grow faster than the global gross domestic product (GDP) in the foreseeable future. As a result, economies are becoming more interactive and connected to foreign trade, and they also need more reliable global networks," Carrera said. "With this new investment, businesses in Turkey can access UPS's intelligent global logistics network, taking advantage of export opportunities to grow."
The statement also read that the new facility is part of UPS's $2 billion European investment program aimed at modernizing and enhancing the entire continental UPS network.
The company recently invested in Paris, London and Eindhoven. By better linking Turkey to UPS's advanced European network, it provides customers with attractive access to new markets in the rest of Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, the Indian subcontinent, the Middle East and Africa.
UPS Turkey Country Manager Burak Kılıç said the Turkish economy is displaying a very strong growth performance with a great potential to increase exports for businesses of all sizes in the country. "This new structure, with close to 20 plants and domestic express network in the country, is a clear indication of our commitment to providing our customers with the support they need to grow their businesses," Kılıç added.
Turkey is only five hours away from Europe, the Middle East, Central Asia, North and Eastern Europe, said Kadri Samsunlu, General Manager and Chief Executive Officer of İGA Airport Operation, stressing that Turkey's geographical location offers a strategic advantage for logistics as proven by UPS and other global shipping companies' plans to operate in Istanbul.
"Our aim is to increase our cargo and freight handling capacity by utilizing our strategic position and cutting-edge technology to reduce transit times. Istanbul will be a hub for both passenger and cargo and freight transport," Samsunlu continued.
This new facility is part of an ongoing transformation strategy to prioritize resources and direct investments for UPS's great strategic advantage and long-term shareholder turnaround, the company said. In early 2017, the company announced plans to update its intelligent global logistics network by increasing productivity and capacity with the latest technology, information technology and automation.