A group, the Aviation Round Table (ART) on Sunday said economic recession was responsible for the 26 per cent drop in Nigeria’s air passenger traffic in 2017.
Mr Gbenga Olowo, ART President, made this known while speaking with the News agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, adding that “that is expected because the country was in recession.
“In fact, December was so bad that there was a total shut down. December is when people usually travel for holidays but a lot of people stayed put because there are no activities in the economy and people don’t have money to spend.”
He, however, expressed optimism that the sector would perform better in 2018.
“I hope 2018 will witness an improvement because of politics and monies that are going to be spent.
“Also, government will want to speed up the fulfilment of their promises. These will gear up traveling. So, 2018 is more positive for traveling.
“The economy is coming out of recession, fiscal policies that government wants to drive will definitely stimulate commerce and travel, as well as politics that are around the corner,” Olowo said.
NAN reports that no fewer than 11,221,608 air travellers went through Nigeria airports in 2017 according to figures released by the Consumer Protection Directorate of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).
This is however a 26 per cent decrease compared to the 15,232,597 passengers recorded between January and December 2016.