Milan Malpensa (MXP) to become the main cargo hub in Southern Europe

Yesterday, 5 March 2021, DHL Express Italy inaugurated its brand new logistic hub at Cargo City, the part of Milan Malpensa airport destined for cargo operations. Malpensa is therefore on its way to becoming the central cargo hub in Southern Europe.

Malpensa: 4th hub in Europe for Cargo operations

With an investment of € 110 million, DHL Express Italy, subsidiary of the German group Deutsche Post DHL, has finally inaugurated its new hub at Milan Malpensa. It is a technologically advanced building capable of managing up to 37 flights a day and 38 thousand items per hour. Such a significant investment has led the airport to become the fourth cargo hub in Europe, following Lipsia, East Midlands (UK), and Bruxelles.

The brand new headquarter will become the gateway for all goods produced in the Lombardia region and destined both to Italy and international markets, playing a fundamental role in developing its economy. In fact, the new building is a dual facility structure designed for all processes of DHL Express; it is a hub for the air service, but there is also a Service Centre for the Pick-up and delivery service. 

The new DHL Express Italy facility at Milan Malpensa Cargo City. Photo by DHL/

DHL has been investing €350 million in Italy, intending to become the first partner of Italian companies exporting Made in Italy to the rest of the world. Therefore, the decision to open this new innovative building at Malpensa airport, the main hub of the region, representing one-third of the Country’s exports.

A bright future for Malpensa

Armando Brunini, CEO of the company managing Milan’s airports, Linate and Malpensa (SEA – Società Esercizi Aeroportuali), underlined the growing importance of Malpensa as a cargo hub in Europe. The expansions of DHL in Malpensa will affect more than positively the airport, with already +30% of goods being exported from the airport just in the first two months of 2021. 

SEA and DHL have been partners for seven years now, and this profitable partnership is here to stay. During the inauguration, the SEA CEO stated: “(…) We will work in synergy with DHL to foster air cargo growth and realize the important infrastructural developments planned for Malpensa Cargo City”.

A DHL plane at MXP Cargo City. Photo by DHL

From DHL Express in Malpensa to…

The new building can guarantee the import/export of goods from/to Italy thanks to flights to the national airports of Naples, Ancona and Pisa, from/to Europe with flights to Lipsia, Bruxelles, Paris, Barcelona, Vitoria, London, East Midlands, Cologne, Zagabria, Athens, Budapest and Thessaloniki and, finally, from and to beyond Europe with connections to Bahrain and Seul. On 17 November 2020, the last route to be added from Malpensa was Cincinnati, USA, with daily flights from Tuesday to Saturday. A total of 37 flights a day, more than 180 each week, operated by a modern fleet, amongst which we find the A330 with a capacity of 50 tonnes.

A DHL plane being loaded at MXP. Photo by Anja Jungnickel


Do you think the DHL Express hub’s opening will help Malpensa become the cargo operations leader in Southern Europe? Let us know in the comment below! 

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Giacomo Amati
Giacomo Amati
Aviation Reporter - Giacomo has been passionate about commercial aviation since his very childhood. Currently, he is pursuing a Master in Air Transport Management at the University of Surrey, UK. His expertise within the industry entails an internship with Emirates Airlines in Milan Malpensa airport and a bachelor's thesis on the financial status of the former Italian national carrier, Alitalia. Besides aviation, Giacomo loves foreign languages, German being his favourite one, and travelling.


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