The Emirates service to Dubai has carried the vast majority of exports flown out of the airport, the value of which now stands at £310m per annum. Before the Emirates service was launched from Newcastle in 2001, flown exports stood at less than £20m.
The main bulk of exports is made up of pharmaceuticals, oilfield equipment and auto parts, although cargo can also include products such as fishing rods and works of art.
David Laws, chief executive at Newcastle International Airport said: “The increase in flown exports over the last nine years has been phenomenal, and the Emirates service highlights the transformational effect a single long haul scheduled service can have.
“The key to the success of Emirates is that it connects the North East to Dubai and then via Dubai to over 150 destinations. We hope to emulate the success of Emirates with that of our New York service with United Airlines which is set to return in May.
“With the North East being the only region in the country with a consistently positive balance of trade; and with about 150,000 jobs in foreign-owned companies in the region; our international links are critical to our business and economic success.”
David Coppock, regional director for UK Trade and Investment North East, told BQ: “As well as being an export hub for goods, Newcastle Airport is the starting point for many of UKTI's Northern Powerhouse missions exploring trade overseas.
“As we have already seen with the introduction of Dubai and New York intercontinental links the more flights and destinations that are added, the number of export opportunities continues to increase.
“This week is Exporting is Great week and through a series of events we are encouraging more businesses across the region to take their first steps on an export journey - knowing there are excellent transport links in place can only help with that.”
Robert Siegel, Emirates VP, Cargo Commercial for Europe and Russia, said: “At Emirates SkyCargo we take great pride in the strength of our regional gateways and we are very proud to be part of the continued growth of the export market in Newcastle, carrying over 14,000 tonnes of cargo since we launched the route in 2007.
“For us, Newcastle International Airport provides that vital link between the North East and Dubai and, as the only long haul airline to operate daily from the region to Dubai, we are pleased to connect businesses with over 150 destinations worldwide through our global network”.