‘Why price of airfares are high in Nigeria’

'Why price of airfares are high in Nigeria'
Fresh indication have emerged why the prices of airfares across Nigeria remains high despite intervention by various stalkholders in the country.

iBrandTV had reported that the average fare paid by air passengers for specified routes single journey increased by 18.71 percent year-on-year to N36,495.41 in March.

A breakdown of the finding shows that the states with the highest airfare were Anambra/Lagos (N38,600.00), Delta/Jigawa (N38,500.00), Bauchi (N38,450.00).

But, the Chairman of West Link Airlines, Captain Ibrahim Mshelia, stated that, airlines are faced with inconsistent fuel pricing and they also pay import duty for spare parts even when the government has granted waivers, etc.

According to him, “As I speak, I still pay duty for all parts I import to service our aircraft. I don’t even know if there is anything we produce locally that we use to operate our aircraft these days besides catering.”

He further explained that it is important to speed up general aviation development to create options for the flying public.

He noted that the speedup would take away some of the inherent challenges in the industry that caused the fares to soar, things that affect the airlines at the core and militate against their survival.

He said, “More airlines are coming onstream, this will mitigate this problem. In defence of the airlines, there are many factors that affect ticket pricing in Nigeria. Aviation does not enjoy oil money anymore.

Chairman of United Nigerian Airlines, Chief Obiora Okonkwo attributed the prices hike to the inconsistent jet fuel price or unavailable jet fuel and lack of forex to enable the system operate like clockwork.

He said, “Honestly speaking if you look at the cost of operations in this industry, I’ll say that there may not be so much amount paid that we can regard as too much. You will not like it.”

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