The airport also revealed in its full-year results yesterday that Vietnam Airlines is moving its operation from Gatwick to Heathrow. John Holland-Kaye, Heathrow chief executive, said the announcement was “good news for Britain as it secures a direct flight to an important growth economy, with more frequent flights and cargo capacity”.
He added: “It also underlines that airlines can only make flights to many long haul destinations viable from a hub airport like Heathrow.”
The airport recorded its busiest ever December in 2014, with 5.93m passengers travelling through, up 2.4 per cent on December 2013. The volume of passengers flying to East Asia went up by 5.2 per cent.
Transfer passenger numbers increased by 4.7 per cent year-on-year, and went up by 2.5 per cent for the full year. Cargo volumes increased by 5.3 per cent in 2014 to 1.5m metric tonnes.
Holland-Kaye used yesterday’s results to call for the airport to be extended. “Only by expanding Heathrow can we add direct flights to the world’s growing cities, increase our exports and connect all of the UK to global growth,” he said.