Norwegian state-owned airport operator Avinor reported a 50.9% surge in passenger traffic and a 20.7% increase in aircraft movements in Q3 2021 compared to the same quarter a year ago.

Passenger volume jumped 123% while aircraft movements rose 42% compared to Q2 2021.

Operating income, which includes state operating subsidies, soared 108.5% to $319m (NOK2.9bn) over this period.

State operating subsidies rose by $99.2m (NOK900m). Traffic income grew by $44m (NOK400m) while other operating income increased by $25.8m (NOK234m).

During the first nine months of 2021, passenger traffic and aircraft movements registered a year-on-year (YOY) decrease of 19.4% and 3.1%, respectively, leading to a sharp decline in traffic income and commercial income.

Between 1 January 2021 and 30 September 2021, the total passenger volume managed by Avinor’s airports was 67% less compared to 2019.

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The fall was driven by airports with international destinations.

Avinor said that works have been initiated to fund the new airports Bodø and Mo i Rana, which are also included in the Norwegian Government’s draft state budget for 2022.

These airports are also set to receive government and local funding.

Recently, Onepark secured a contract to operate parking facilities at Oslo Airport.

Going forward, Avinor intends to improve efficiency to strengthen its financial position in the longer term.

Avinor CEO Abraham Foss said: “We have seen an increase in travel activity throughout the summer and autumn as a result of the increased rate of vaccination and the easing of travel restrictions. Consequently, there has been increased traffic and commercial income in this period.

“Although we saw rising passenger numbers and aircraft movements during Q3, there is still a significant decline in income from traffic and commercial activities over 2021 as a whole due to fewer passengers and aircraft movements.

“We are working on measures to strengthen our equity in the longer term. This will include the continuation of cost-saving measures, reductions in investment levels and an income-generation agenda.”

In April, Avinor signed a framework agreement with Øveraasen, a snow removal equipment manufacturer.