Elaborate on Munich Airport's new Summer Timetable and Improved Connections for Business and Leisure Travelers.

Dr. Michael Kerkloh, CEO, Munich Airport, on climbing the ranks of the best airports in Europe. 

width=200Our most important carrier, Lufthansa, has added two new destinations this summer - Tel Aviv and Lviv, Ukraine. It's also increasing Private Air Business Jet service to New York (JFK) with six additional frequencies per week, bringing the total to 20. Lufthansa is offsetting any frequency reductions within Germany and Europe by using larger aircraft with higher seat capacities per flight. We've added two new destinations from MUC: London-Gatwick, with three daily flights (two with Aer Lingus and one with easyJet); and Muscat, which will be serviced by Oman Air three times weekly starting Sept. 30, flying the Airbus A330-200 with a 1-2-1 configuration in business class.

What Is Your Response to Airlines' Reduction of Flights? How Does MUC Continue to Offer Premium Service?

As a hub for Lufthansa and Star Alliance, Munich isn't affected as strongly by the economic crisis as other German airports. In partnership with Lufthansa, we continue to pursue additional intercontinental destinations. Lufthansa's sister company, Air Dolomiti, also adds to our success. We are nicknamed Italy's northernmost airport, and have achieved second place in Europe for the number of services to Italy. With the newest destination, Rimini, 21 Italian cities are connected nonstop via MUC, and seat capacity increases steadily. Our Italian guests feel at home at Spazio Italia,'' a gate area dedicated exclusively to Italy-bound flights that includes a bistro with Italian-speaking staff, Italian specialties and Italian TV and newspapers. Air Dolomiti will be replacing five BAe-124s with the brand-new Embraer 195.

It is no wonder we've been chosen Best Airport in Europe for the fourth consecutive year in the Skytrax World Airport Awards; in the worldwide ranking, we are fifth.

How Does MUC Compare to Other German and European Airports?

MUC is the second-largest airport and the second-largest intercontinental hub in Germany. Our growth is above average. Within the last 10 years we have improved our ranking by 15 places to place 27th worldwide. Last year we surpassed London-Gatwick in Europe. With Rome-Fiumicino, which has regained some long-haul flights from Milan Airport, we're neck-and-neck. In the medium-term it is our goal to rank No. 6 in Europe's top 10.

What is planned for the next several years?

Even with this economic downswing, we are taking an anti-cyclical approach and moving ahead with our major investment plans. By 2015 we plan to invest more than 1.5 billion euros in the development of our airport. In addition to a third runway, we are planning a Star Alliance Terminal 2 satellite building with a capacity of 15 million passengers. We are building a new 3-star-plus hotel, scheduled to open in 2010, and will be expanding the 5-star Kempinski Hotel, located between Terminals 1 and 2.