FRANKFURT — German airport operator Fraport AG said Tuesday it signed a preliminary agreement with airlines which may see fees increase 12.5 percent over the next two years at Frankfurt Airport as it expands. “In view of the enormous capital investments to be realized by Fraport in the coming years and the currently difficult economic situation faced particularly by the airlines, we have reached a result that provides the planning security we require,” Stefan Schulte, Fraport’s CEO said in a statement.
Fraport is planning a substantial expansion at Frankfurt, including a fourth runway that it hopes to open by 2011, and a third terminal which will open in stages after the new runway.
It said it is spending about euro1 billion ($1.5 billion) annually on just the airside facilities, or the side of Frankfurt Airport where actual aircraft operations take place.
Fraport said the expenditures require about euro100 million annually in interest and other charges and that “these expenditures must first be earned: through the expected traffic growth, through additional airport charges and through increasing proceeds from retailing.”
The new fee deal with airlines sees charges rising 4 percent in July and by 3 percent in October. In April 2011, charges will be raised by another 3 percent and by 2.5 percent in October 2011. Fraport didn’t provide a euro figure for what the actual charges to airlines were.
Fraport said it also hopes to agree promptly on the fee schedule between 2012 and the end of 2015. If Fraport and the airlines do not agree on the fee schedule until the end of 2015 by Feb. 19 next year, then airlines will face a one-time fee increase of 8.4 percent effective April 1.
Fraport is based at Frankfurt Airport, which is continental Europe’s second biggest after Paris’ Charles de Gaulle. The company also owns or holds stakes or management contracts in a number of airports including Hannover, Germany; Antalya, Turkey and Dakar, Senegal.