Cancellation of Mexico City airport (NAIM): An opportunity for Dallas Fort Worth?


After the cancellation of the New Mexico International Airport (NAIM), the managers of the Dallas Fort Worth terminal (DFW) had a bittersweet feeling: this meant great news in the short term for their air terminal although a threat to the future was not righ now.

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“We were worried that once the NAIM, with its greater capacity and the Aeroméxico-Delta strategic alliance, came into operation, it would make it difficult for us to compete,” said John Ackerman , executive vice president of Global Strategy and Development at the Texan airport, in an interview for A21 .

Dallas Airport has become one of the main hubs in the southern United States , thanks to its multiple intercontinental connections and its privileged geographical position in the center of the United States. For this 2019 they expect to receive more than 70 million passengers.


In this context, the Ackerman team made a strategic plan to analyze who its most important direct competitors are. In the United States, these are Miami and Los Angeles, two of the largest hubs in the American Union.

In Latin America, outside Panama , the great challenge was how to attract airlines that might be tempted to reach the new airport in Mexico City .

“We saw it as a significant threat since some of the connection traffic from Latin America and Asia might have preferred to arrive in Mexico City, rather than Dallas,” he said.

In the long term, it is not so beneficial

However, John Ackerman is nervous about the cancellation of the NAIM in Mexico. In the short term this will benefit Dallas, but in the future it could be a drag that also drag them.

“What is bad for Mexico, is going to be bad for Texas and for the DFW. We want Mexico to succeed, “he says.

Remember that 35% of the annual traffic in the Texas terminal comes from just Mexico and only American Airlines has 19 routes between different Mexican cities and the Dallas airport. 

“Mexico is very important for us, so we need a healthy country: that’s good for us in the long term,” he concludes.

A tip: look what China did in Beijing

John Ackerman does not know how the new Metropolitan Airports System will work, driven by the Federal Government and consisting of the terminals of Mexico City, Toluca and Santa Lucia.

However, if I could give advice to the Mexican government, I would say that you will avoid leaving a terminal for national operations and another for international operations and look at what China has done with its two airports in its capital: the Beijing Capital and the new Beijing-Daxing.

“What they did is that they left all the airlines belonging to Star Alliance in the old airport and everyone else will have to move to the new one, so both will be fully functional without requiring transfers between the two airports,” he said.

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The Mazatlan Post