Catchment area of the Milan airport system

The Milan airport system is situated in one of the most economically developed regions in Europe, named the “Blue Banana Area”, which extends from London as far as Milan/Genoa and acts as a bridge between the Mediterranean basin and continental Europe. The catchment area of the Milan airports includes primarily the Lombardy Region, in which the airports of Malpensa and Linate are located and which represents its primary user base.

The Lombardy region, with an area of 23,861 km2, in 2009 recorded:

  • a GDP of euro 326.1 billion (accounting for 20.7% of Italian GDP), ranking 2nd among European airport catchment areas, immediately after Paris (GDP of euro 488.6 billion of Purchasing Powers Standard or PPS), and ahead of London (GDP of euro 249.7 billion of PPS)(1), Madrid (GDP of euro 208.3 billion of PPS) and Frankfurt (GDP of euro 146.8 of PPS);
  • a population of greater than 9.7 million; 
  • a density of active enterprises of over 34.5 per km2 (2).

The favourable geographical location of the Milan airports in terms of user base is highlighted by a catchment area of these airports with a significant presence of industrial and advanced service enterprises, served by logistical infrastructures which foster economic development, in particular ports and airports, as highlighted in the following table.

Socio-economic development indicators of the catchment area of the SEA Group
  Natural catchment area (*) % of Italian total 
Area (km2) 49,324 16.4
Population 14,227,529 23.5
Number of active companies 1,226,306 23.1
GDP (millions of euro) 448,953 28.7
Employed persons 6,072,787 26.4
Exports (thousands of euro) 137,513,223 38.3
Imports (thousands of euro)  149,299,814 42.6
(*) The Catchment Area of the Milan Airports includes the provinces of: Sondrio, Bergamo, Brescia, Cremona, Como, Varese, Lecco, Lodi, Milan, Padua, Piacenza, Monza Brianza, Parma, Novara, Biella, Verbania, Vercelli, Turin, Asti, Alessandria and Aosta.


(1) Source: Eurostat - News Release 2010 (Regional GDP 2007); the London zone concerns “Inner London”.
(2) Source: Lombardy Regional Statistical Report – December 2010.


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