Airports in Nigeria had 15.8 million passengers passing through them in 2021, a 69 per cent rise in air passenger rate, according to the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN).
The Managing Director of FAAN, Capt. Rabiu Yadudu who spoke at the 2022 Airline and Airport Business Summit, said the growth of air transport statistics has improved rapidly after the COVID-19 pandemic, disclosing that the passenger figure rose from 9.3 million in 2020 to 15.8m in 2021, showing an increase of 69% while aircraft movement increased by over 46% after the COVID-19.
On cargo movement, Yadudu said 191,000 tons of cargo were recorded in 2020, but rose to 381,000 tons in 2021, adding that the authority is working with other stakeholders in the air cargo logistics value chain to improve cargo export.
He said, "Our figure this year is even much higher. In 2020, it was down, in 2021 we got about a 70% increase. Our recovery is very, very rapid both in terms of passenger movement and cargo."
Yadudu also said FAAN would no longer extend operating hours for sunset airports.
Apart from the five major airports in Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Enugu and Kano, which operate 24 hours, the others classified as sunset airports operate between 7am and 6pm (sunset).
"We have already met with the National Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) team and we have agreed that once an airport is a sunrise to sunset, it has to remain sunrise to sunset. It is for all stakeholders to respect that particular provision and operate accordingly," he added.
A former MD of FAAN, Mr. Richard Aisuebeongun said collaborative service delivery is the only way to grow the industry beyond "all of us."