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23/03/2010

Brescia D’Annunzio Airport: announced development of the infrastructure and new commercial alliances

Brescia D’Annunzio Airport: the Managing Company announced in a press conference new commercial alliances, infrastructure developments, investments and medium-term induced estimates. Specialization, strategic development of the infrastructures and new intermodal efficiency as competitive advantages on national and international scenario.

Brescia, March 23rd 2010 – On today press conference the Management of Catullo Spa and D’Annunzio Spa (the subsidiary society operating at Montichiari airport) illustrated new business alliances and infrastructure projects, finalized to the development of airport structures, with investments equal to 50 millions Euro over the next four years. Infrastructure investments are going to be functional to the outcome of business and marketing activities undertaken in the past months, aiming to get higher advantages and competitiveness by the airport specialization.

According to the development project, in cooperation with Catullo airport, and then in the future with the adequate conditions, in alliance with Bergamo and Milan airports, Brescia could become a key logistic platform, thanks to the full exploitation of its 3000 meters long runway, and handle all cargo traffic coming from North-Eastern Europe. Besides cargo segment, general aviation, low cost and chartered air traffic are going to be progressively improved too, considering anyway the presence of Ghedi military airport, that is strategic for national defense, but imposing limitations in terms of flights and hours. These lines of development are going to be even more effective after that important investments on the road network surrounding the airport will be completed (Brebemi and “Corda Molle”).

During the press conference, the importance of specialization - and therefore the logic of segment diversification between the two airports – was underlined by the Managing Company as it is functional to their growth as whole system. As we know the two Garda System Airports belong to a very challenging area, since they are located between other competitor airport systems (both the east and on the west) that are among the first ones in Italy, in term of passenger and cargo traffic. Not to forget also the economic crisis affecting air traffic. Consequently and especially in the short-medium term, the Verona and Brescia airports development logic has to make room to specialization, in order to get the maximum advantage for the society.

The first important result of the commercial agreements is the new connection that is going to operate from March 27th, thanks to the contract subscribed with a leading partner such as Lufthansa Cargo. The flight is going to be operated weekly by Boeing 737 on Brescia – Frankfurt route. The number of weekly flights is possibly going to be increased in short time.

In parallel to the definition of the partnership with Lufthansa Cargo, a warehouse in Montichiari airport has been restructured and adjusted and has been transformed into a specially equipped area of 600 sqm.

Besides the agreement subscribed with Lufthansa Cargo, due to the will of exploiting cargo vocation in Brescia, as already in 2009, goods traffic is going to be increased through new negotiations with some all-cargo carriers. Another important partner for the airport is Jade Cargo doing connections from and to China with Boeing 747/400.

Moreover, D’Annunzio airport is the Italian hub for Poste Italiane: 32.000 tons handled in 2009 (up by 2,7% on 2008). The contract that is about to be renewed provides the employment of newer aircrafts. The cargo traffic trend compared to the previous year reports much higher figures than the average trend registered on a national level, thanks to the positive contribution of postal traffic.

As part of infrastructure renovation plan, a new storage tent will soon be available (in addition to the 1700 sqm pre-existing one, for a total of 3400 sqm) and will mostly be dedicated to postal activity, being placed next to the Customs line and provided with a large loading/unloading area for road transport. An additional new 7000 sqm cargo building for goods storage will be added soon and will be properly equipped to handle a wide range of products. It is going to be completed with a loading / unloading platform and include new offices for National Bodies and Shipping Agents, along with a large access and parking area for motor and cargo vehicles.

Moreover, within 2010, refueling will be available for much lower prices then today with a strong and positive impact on the competitiveness of Montichiari airport. Thanks to the by now almost completed infrastructure improvements, the overall airport ground access cost will be considerably lower and especially air-carriers working on long haul nonstop destinations will be further attracted to Brescia airport.

Analysis estimates that Cargo transportation in the North of Italy could reach 1,6 million tons in the medium term (about 5 years), on total 2 million tons in the whole Italy. By using ACI growth multipliers, we expect to have 5600 new job places, for an annual impact equal to 140 million Euro GDP. According to current figures, we estimate to create almost 600 new job places in Brescia for each additional 100.000 tons of goods handled, that will be distributed along the logistics chain management. (Source: “Ambrosetti. The future of the Air Transport System” – Commercial Office Garda System Airports. 2009 Traffic Data Processing).

Finally, the intermodal transport network in the area surrounding the airport, the so-called high speed road “Brebemi” between Milan and Brescia (end of works foreseen within 2013) and the connection to the new Ospitaletto-Montichiari highway (the so-called “Corda Molle”), will make airport access even more advantageous both for goods and passengers.

Besides cargo business, infact, passenger traffic and general aviation are also being improved. New domestic and international routes are currently being defined: new connections to the Balkan area and to tourist destinations like Sardinia and Costa Azzurra through an additional carrier will be opened for the summer season. New flights are going to be communicated to the press, as soon as the related contracts with the carriers involved are subscribed.