The Federal Airport Authority (FAAN), has attributed the recent huge increase in airfares by domestic airlines to increased cost of aviation fuel and spike in exchange rate.
According to NAN, this was made known by the Head of Corporate Communications, Port Harcourt International Airport, Kunle Akinbode, during an interview on Monday in Port Harcourt, where he acknowledged that aviation fuel has gone up by more than 60%.
What the spokesman of FAAN is saying
Akinbode during the interview said that the aviation fuel which sold for about N250 per litre, now sells for more than N400 per litre, adding that the hike also includes prices of spare parts which have drastically increased in recent times.
He said that despite the complaints over the new increase of airfares, the patronage by passengers have not been affected as it has been considerably good as Nigerians will still fly despite the high flight ticket rate, due to speed and security challenges.
He said, “FAAN and other regulatory agencies in the aviation industry are conscious of the plight of airport users, especially in respect to increased airfare by the various airlines.
“Currently, aviation fuel is selling for over N400 per litre, all aircraft components/parts required for operations are imported, so this has invariably affected airfare.
“Nigerians will still fly irrespective of the cost because speed and security is a major advantage of air transportation over road.’’
Some of the airline passengers have maintained that they are stuck with air travel because there have not been credible alternatives like train services, just like other parts of the country, which they would prefer.
What you should know
- Recall that about a week ago, Nairametrics reported that passengers in the aviation sector were full of lamentations as the domestic airlines jacked up airfares by a minimum of 100%, with a one-way economy ticket selling at over N50,000.
- This was coming barely less than 10 days after the airline operators in Nigeria had warned that the skyrocketing price of aviation fuel by over 100% to between N420 and N450 per litre within a year, would lead to an increase in the price of tickets in order to sustain their operations.
- The airline operators had attributed the increase to the rising cost of aviation fuel, hike in prices of aviation-related materials, services and foreign exchange.
- However, the Federal Government through the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) and the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), had set up a joint technical committee to address these consumer-related issues in the aviation sector which include high airfares, insensitive flight delays and cancellations and other unfair practices.