A total of 3,710,618 million passengers traveled through Nigeria’s
airports in the opening quarter of 2015,the National Bureau of
Statistics (NBS) has said.
This is even as the volume of travelers from Nigerian airports to international destinations have dropped.
The data contained in Q4 2014-Q1 2015 Aviation report and made available
to the Guardian also indicated that the figure represented a decline by
453,144 passengers or 10.88% when compared with the preceding quarter.
The report further indicated a rise in patronage level which peaked
in Q4 of 2014, with 4,163,762 million passengers traveling, up 227,744
or 5.59% from Q3 of the same year.
The NBS said highest numbers of international passengers for both Q3
of 2014 and Q1 of 2015 were recorded at the Murtala Mohammed
Airport(MMA) Lagos with 852,049 passengers or 71.36% of the total in Q4,
passenger numbers declined by 153,320 or 17.99% in Q1, to 698,729 or
48.22% of the total. Year on year, MMA airport recorded declines in
passenger numbers in both Q4 of 2014 and Q1 of 2015, of 29,733 or 3.37%
and 85,750 or 10.93% in each quarter respectively.
According to the quarterly report,year on year, the Q1 2015 volume of
travelers was 294,011 passengers or 8.61% greater than that figures
recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2014, whereas Q4 was 594,317
passengers or 16.65% greater than the number recorded in the closing
quarter of 2013.
Declines in total number of passengers using the airports in the
first quarter,the NBS said was as a result of lower numbers of
domestically traveling passengers which stood at 708,092 or 23.84% below
Q4 of 2014 values, whereas volume of international passengers increased
by 254,948 passengers or 21.35%. The bureau also noted that the
quarterly rise observed in Q4 of 2014 was driven solely by higher
domestic passenger numbers, increasing by 320,544 or 12.10% relative to
the preceding quarter, whereas internationally bound travelers declined
by 92,800 or 7.21%.
Of the passengers that traveled in Q1 of 2015, a total of 2,261,648
or 60.95% traveled domestically, while 71.32% of travel was domestic in
the preceding quarter. The corresponding quarters recorded 68.84% and
65.90% domestic travel in Q1 of 2015 and Q4 of 2014 respectively.
“In the fourth quarter of 2014, the airport with the greatest
frequency of domestic passenger traffic was Murtala Muhammed Airport in
Lagos, with 1,088,141 passengers, or 36.64% of the total. This was the
peak of the airport’s series, having increased by 74,225 passengers or
7.32% from the preceding quarter. The opening quarter of 2015 however,
saw a sharp decline in MMA’s domestic passenger traffic, with 191,617 or
17.61% fewer passengers than the preceding quarter. Nonetheless, this
decline was lower, relative to the other airports, as MMA held a 3.00%
point greater share of the total this quarter, at 39.64%. Year on year,
Q1 of 2015, recorded a marginally lower volume of domestic passenger
traffic, with 2,372 or 0.26% fewer passengers”, the report said.
The report said however that Q1 of 2015 saw an almost equal decline,
of 176,503 passengers or 18.76% yet representing a rise ,year on year,
of 63,120 passengers or 9.00% relative to the 701,249 passengers that
traveled in Q1 of 2014. Abuja’s share of total domestic passenger
traffic increased to 33.80% in the opening quarter.
Port Harcourt continued to hold the third highest volume of passenger
traffic, with 329,499 passengers in Q4 of 2014, declining by 64,406
passengers or 19.55% in Q1 of 2015 to 265,093 passengers. Its share of
the total however, increased only marginally, from 11.10% in Q4 of 2014
to 11.72% in Q1 of 2015. Relative to the corresponding quarter of 2014,
the opening quarter of 2015 still recorded passenger traffic lower by
9,093 persons or 3.32%.
The only positive quarter on quarter passenger growth came from
Makurdi airport in Q1 of 2015, with 87 or 16.29% more passengers than in
Q4 of 2014. Year on year, Abuja, Ilorin and Kano saw positive growth in
2015’s opening quarter; Kano represented the greatest increase of
19.38%, representing 9,377 more passengers. For the closing quarter of
2014, highest quarterly growth was recorded in Makurdi again, with a
111.07% rise of 281 passengers from Q3 of 2014