Temel Kotil, CEO of Turkish Airlines [THY], is advocating the construction of a third airport for Istanbul, claiming that it will generate US $14 billion in additional revenues from the Middle East alone
Kotil says that Istanbul needs to offer a “mega hub” of advanced and high-quality air services. He noted that many airlines from the East first land in Beirut before flying on to Europe, to avoid paying carbon emissions taxes. If Istanbul had a third major airport, all those planes would land in Istanbul instead of Beirut, [he argues].
[Kotil] estimates that by the end of 2012 THY will be flying to 220 destinations and adding 60 more, making his company [Turkey’s] foremost airline. THY, which is nearing 38 million passengers, will need to work much harder to catch up with Lufthansa’s 55 million, he added.