Paris-Vatry faces uncertain future

Paris-Vatry is facing an uncertain future after more than 10 years of failing to live up to its ambition of becoming a complementary gateway to the congested Paris Roissy-CDG for air freight traffic. Last year, Paris-Vatry lost its two biggest freight operators, DHL and Avient, leaving the airport’s state-ofthe- art facilities vastly underutilised. Africa-specialist, Avient, […]


Paris-Vatry is facing an uncertain future after more than 10 years of failing to live up to its ambition of becoming a complementary gateway to the congested Paris Roissy-CDG for air freight traffic.

Last year, Paris-Vatry lost its two biggest freight operators, DHL and Avient, leaving the airport’s state-ofthe- art facilities vastly underutilised. Africa-specialist, Avient, which brought in nearly 70 per cent of Paris-Vatry volumes, left suddenly and acrimoniously in September for Liège, with Paris- Vatry’s operating company, SEVE, claiming the cargo carrier had not settled bills amounting to €1.5 million (US$2 million).

An investment of nearly €220 million over the last decade gave the airport stateof- the-art facilities and infrastructure; France’s third longest civil runway (3,860 metres); 24-hour opening; and large land reserves for further development.

The airport was projected to be handling 150,000 tonnes of air freight annually after its first decade of operation. Its high point of 42,000 tonnes came in 2008 and last year’s traffic may see a decline to around 20,000 tonnes with this year potentially even worse.