A report by the National Bureau of Statistics released this week shows 13,394,945 passengers traveled through Nigerian airports in 2017. This comprised of 6,693,687 at arrivals and 6,701,258 at departures. The figure was an 8.03% decline from 2016, mainly due to the six-week closure of Abuja airport in March 2017.
2017 Q4 saw steady growth in the number of both domestic and international passengers travelling to or from Nigerian airports, by 6.46% and 1.01% respectively.
For the first time in the year, more arrivals were recorded than departures for both domestic and international travelers in 2017 Q4. Arrivals and departures in the reviewing quarter were 1,864,906 and 1,308,959 respectively.
What airports had the highest traffic ?
Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Owerri, and Kano airports served over 92% of total passengers in the fourth quarter of 2017. The fourth quarter of a year is for the months October-December.
A total of 57,484 aircraft arrived at or departed from Nigerian airports in 2017 Q4, among which 47,223 were domestic aircraft and 10,261 were international aircraft.
The last quarter of 2017 recorded 33,425,743 KG cargo movement in Nigerian international airports. The figure declined by 41.75% year-on-year and by 25.53% quarter-on-quarter.
The volume of cargo movement in Lagos, Port Harcourt, Abuja, Enugu, and Kano declined sharply by 40.13% 41.67%, 79.73%, 83.88% and 10.80% year-on-year in 2017 Q4.
In 2017 Q4, the weight of mail to move through Lagos was 363,228 kilograms which increased by 255.23% from 2016 Q4. Mail movement through Abuja international airports grew by 15.11% year-on-year.
The annual total numbers of domestic and international air passengers declined by -8.40% and -7.13% respectively compared with the previous year.
Passengers who traveled through Abuja airport largely increased from Q2 (577,386 domestic and 692,207 international) to Q3 (841,401 domestic and 231,414 international) due to the reopening of Abuja airport.
Kaduna airport recorded higher than usual numbers of domestic traffic in the first two quarters of 2017 (124,996 in Q1 and 129,034 in Q2) since a large proportion of air traffic through Abuja was redirected to Kaduna after Abuja airport’s closure in March 2017.
The annual total number of aircraft that arrived at or departed from Nigerian airports in 2017 stood at 214,258 which grew marginally by 0.61% from the same quarter in 2016.
Cargo Movement also fell
Cargo movement declined for the fourth year running since 2014. The annual volume of cargo movement in 2017 bottomed at 161,800,520 KG (a decline by 17.07% from the annual figure in 2016).
Abuja international airport recorded the highest year-on-year decline in cargo movement traffic among the five airports (59.21%), followed by decline at Enugu (44.35%), and Lagos (18.19%). Cargo movement at Kano international airport and Port Harcourt international airport in 2017 increased by 20.28% and 17.56% respectively.
In 2017, the volume of total mail movement in Abuja and Lagos airports grew significantly (by 500%) compared with 2016.