AirBaltic set to build cargo hub at Riga Airport

With plans to initiate the project next year, it is hoped the new facility will increase the volume of freight handled at the hub

Latvian airline airBaltic and Riga Airport have signed a land reservation contract for building a cargo hangar at the Northern European hub.

Once completed, the facility will be the largest air freight handling site in the Baltics.

“For years airBaltic Cargo has provided essential mail and cargo shipments to and from Latvia, using the existing hangar,” said Martin Gauss, chief executive officer of airBaltic. “However, the hangar will be demolished to make room for the Rail Baltica track. The new Baltic Cargo Hub will enable the company to handle more than 30,000 tonnes of cargo each year.”

Photo airBaltic 

Laila Odina, chairperson of the board at Riga Airport, added: “The volume of belly cargo forms a significant part of cargo carriage at Riga Airport, and airBaltic is the largest carrier of this type of cargo. The construction of a new cargo handling centre will help increase the volume of cargo handled at Riga Airport and will benefit both the airport and airBaltic.”

In November 2020, the carrier was the winner of a tender for the rent of land and building of the multimodal logistics centre that was issued by the Latvian capital’s hub. Initial plans state that the facility will be 6000m2.

Construction is set to commence late next year and is expected to be completed by early 2024.

Banks will finance the project, whilst Baltijas Kravu centrs SIA – the cargo handling subsidiary of airBaltic – will be the operator.