Mumbai: India retained its position as the seventh largest country market for Changi Airport Group (Singapore) Pte, with the city-state’s airport handling 3.44 million Indian passengers in 2015.

Mumbai was Changi’s fourth fastest growing route (+8.2% on-year) among destinations with at least half a million passengers handled in 2015.

Bangkok, Colombo and Guangzhou took the top three spots for Changi Airport, the world’s seventh busiest airport for international traffic.

Changi handled a record 55.4 million passengers and about 346,300 landings and take-offs in 2015.

With over 100 airlines providing connectivity to 320 cities worldwide, Changi Airport handles about 6,800 flights every week, or about one every 90 seconds.

In comparison, India’s busiest airport, the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi, handled 36.88 million passengers and 313,958 total aircraft movements in 2013-14, according to its website.

Changi Airport is positioning itself as an international hub airport with its anchor airline Singapore Airlines Ltd. India is yet to have a strong hub and a strong anchor airline to offer connections to various international destinations.

Singapore Airlines Group also owns full service airline Silk Air and a majority stake in low-cost airline Tiger Air. All of them fly to India. Scoot Pte, the low-cost and medium haul airline arm of Singapore Airlines Group, will start flying to India from March-end subject to regulatory approvals.

“The addition of a new service to Lucknow increased the total number of Changi’s city links to India to 13, strengthening the airport’s position as the most connected airport in Southeast Asia to India. In terms of traffic, the top five Indian cities for Changi Airport are Mumbai, Chennai, New Delhi, Bangalore and Tiruchirappalli," the airport company said.

The annual data also reveals that favourite buys for Indian passengers last year were liquor and tobacco, perfumes and cosmetics followed by confectionaries, electronics and jewellery, the airport said.

“Closer to our hub, Asia continues to present exciting growth opportunities, with untapped tourism potential in many parts of the continent, and growing affluence in the emerging economies driving air travel," Changi Airport Group chief executive officer Lee Seow Hiang said.

Changi Airport Group (Singapore) was formed on 16 June 2009 and the corporatisation of Singapore Changi Airport followed on 1 July 2009.

Through its unit Changi Airports International, the group invests in and manages foreign airports.

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