Nigeria Aviation Industry Supports 254,500 Jobs, Contributes N184.7bn to GDP

By Chinedu Eze

The aviation industry in Nigeria currently supports 254,500 jobs and contributes $940 million (N184.7 billion) to national GDP, according to a Philips Consulting report on the aviation sector made available to THISDAY. The report said 49 per cent of sum amounting to $462 million or N90.8 billion is a direct output of the aviation sector (via airports, airlines and ground services), while the remainder is acquired indirectly (via the supply chain). An additional $464 million (N91.2 billion) is derived from tourism, which raises the overall contribution to $1.4 billion (N275.9 billion). The report by Phillips Consulting said in 2010, aviation contributed about 0.4 per cent to overall GDP in Nigeria, describing it as low in comparison to developed countries such as Spain, 5.2 per cent, the UAE, 3.5 per cent and Canada, 2.8 per cent; and even other African countries such as South Africa, 2.1 per cent and Kenya, 1.1 per cent.

The report described air travellers as passengers who travel for business or leisure purposes, and are the final link in the aviation value chain. “The principal objective of the other players within the aviation value chain is to ensure a smooth airport experience for these passengers,” the report said. On passenger traffic, the report said in Nigeria, domestic passenger traffic has increased remarkably over the past decade and attributed it to the increase in the number of airline operators, increasing flight frequencies and the reconstruction of airports in various states, hence enabling flight route connectivity. “According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the Lagos domestic airport has experienced the largest amount of passenger traffic, with an average of four million passengers annually between 2010 and 2013.

“As the second busiest airport, the Abuja airport followed a similar trend, with annual passenger traffic of 3.5 million within the same period. “The Port Harcourt airport handled more than a million travellers in 2013. The airport initially suffered setbacks due to the reconstruction of its terminals, making nearby airports such as Owerri and Enugu airports popular amongst travellers. “Since the rehabilitation of the airport, the Owerri airport has experienced a decline in passenger traffic by 44 per cent, between 2010 and 2013. Other airports such as Kano, Benin, Osubi and Enugu experience similar levels of passenger traffic at an average of 300,000 passengers every year,” the report revealed. Philip Consulting said in comparison to the other international airports, the Murtala Mohammed International Airport in Lagos remains the busiest airport, with passenger traffic increasing by more than 40 per cent between 2010 and 2013, saying that this rise can be attributed to increased flight routes and the emergence of new airline operators. “The Abuja International Airport has also experienced an increase in passenger traffic by about 48 per cent, ranking in second place after Lagos.

“Other airports such as Kano and Port Harcourt have lower passenger traffic, although these have also experienced significant increases in passenger traffic. “In the Port Harcourt airport, passenger traffic grew from 13,148 to an astounding 125,577 between 2010 and 2013. International airlines such as Lufthansa and Air France have heavily contributed to this increase, by operating daily flights from Port Harcourt to various destinations (through connecting flights). “However, although international passenger traffic has experienced growth over the years, the number of travellers at international airports remains considerably fewer than at domestic airports,” the report noted.



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