Friday, September 07, 2018 / 06:00 PM / NBS
The first two quarters of 2018 saw mixed performance in the various items that make up airport transportation in Nigeria. The total number of passengers who passed through Nigerian airports reached 3,845,853 in the first quarter of 2018 - a 33.51% year-on-year growth from the same quarter of 2017; and 3,657,555 in the second quarter of 2018 - a smaller year-on-year growth of 15.24% from the same quarter in 2017. Consequently, there was 4.9% decline in passengers for Q2 2018 when compared to the preceding quarter. Total aircraft traffic declined year-on-year for both Q1 (1.48%) & Q2 (10.17%) when compared to the corresponding quarter in 2017. In the first half of 2018, aircraft traffic totaled 96,659, a 5.9% decline from total aircrafts recorded in the same period last year. A significant year-on-year decline in air cargo traffic via Lagos for both Q1 2018 (49.8%) and Q2 2018 (65.4%), led to an overall year on year decline of 37.8% for the first half of the year. However, a growth of 25.6% was recorded between Q2 2018 (28,920,555 aircrafts) and the preceding quarter. Similarly, there was a 34.2% increase in total mail traffic recorded in the first half of 2018 when compared to the same period last year.
Total Passenger Traffic
In total, 7,503,408 passengers passed through Nigerian airports in the first half of 2018, this is a 23.9% growth from the 6,054,319 passengers recorded in the first half of 2017. This significant growth in both the first and second quarters of 2018 was mainly driven by the increased passenger traffic through Abuja airports, compared with the same period in 2017 when the Abuja airport was closed during the period for runway improvements. There was also a boost in passenger traffic in March 2018 when total air passenger was recorded at 1,721,224 (797,608 arrivals and 923,616 departures), a 62% jump from the average passenger traffic from the previous two months (January & February 2018).
The total number of air passengers declined in the second quarter of 2018 from the first quarter by 4.90%, standing at 3,657,555. Nevertheless, the recorded total passenger in Q2 indicates a robust year-on-year growth (of 15.24%) from the same quarter in the last year.
Of the 7,503,408 total passengers (arrival and departures) recorded in the first half of 2018, which 27.59% (5,433,145 passengers) traversed through the nation’s international airports and 72.41% (2,070,263) through the various domestic airports. Lagos and Abuja’s international and domestic airports accounted for 73.4% of total air traffic passengers in Q2 2018, a decline in their combined market share in Q1 2018 (77.9%) but an increase in combined market share over the same period last year (Q2 2017).
Figure 1. Domestic and International Air Passengers from 2017 Q1- 2018 Q2
Domestic and International Passengers
In the first quarter of 2018, 2,779,455 passengers traveled through domestic airports (72.3% of total travel), and 1,066,398 through the international airports (27.7% of total travel), representing a growth of 4.99% and 5.30% respectively compared to the previous quarter (Q4 2017). Similarly, in the second quarter of 2018, 2,653,690 passengers traveled through domestic airports (72.6% of total travel), and 1,003,865 through the international airports (27.4% of total travel), representing a decline of 4.52% and 5.86% respectively, compared to Q1 2018. This underpins the slower growth in passenger traffic in the first half of the year when compared with the second half of the previous year, but the robust growth in domestic passenger travel (27.4%) and international passenger travel (15.7%) when compared with the same period last year.
Figure 2. Percentages of Domestic and International Passenger from 2017 Q3- 2018 Q2
Arrivals and Departures
The first quarter of 2018 saw departures, recorded at 1,969,883, grow by 9.74% from departures recorded in Q4 2017 at 1,795,095, and by 34.98% compared to the same quarter in 2017. This figure dropped to 1,837,002 in Q2 2018, a 6.75% decline from the previous quarter (Q1 2018), but a robust growth of 14.76% from the same quarter last year (Q2 2017).
The number of passengers at arrival has remained relatively stable since 2017 Q3. The first two quarters of 2018 recorded 1,875,970 and 1,820,553 air passengers arriving at Nigerian airports respectively. Although the number of passengers at arrival declined in Q2 2018 from Q1 2018 by 2.95%, both the reviewing quarters saw significant year-on-year growth from the corresponding quarters in 2017 (32.01% and 15.73% respectively).
Figure 4. Trends of Passenger Arrivals and Departures 2017 Q1- 2018 Q2
Air Traffic by Airport
The top five airports in Nigeria in terms of the number of passengers who passed through in the first half of 2018 were Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Kano, and Owerri. These five airports served over 89.39% of total passengers (6,707,195 in number) in the first two quarters of 2018.
Lagos Murtala Muhammed International Airport remained the busiest airport in Nigeria for both international and domestic travelers, and it served 3,527,851 passengers (or 48.71% of total air passengers) in the first half of the year (1,972,997 in Q1 and 1,564,854 in Q2). Among the over 3.5 million air passengers who passed through Lagos airport in the first half of 2018, 41.8% or 1,478,738 were international passengers, and 58.2% or 2,059,113 were domestic passengers. In the first quarter of 2018, domestic air passengers who passed through Lagos airport (1,174,943) reached the highest point since the beginning of 2017, and this number declined to 884,170 in the second quarter a decline of 24.75%, although this figure still represented a 2.89% growth from the same period in 2017 (Q2).
Abuja Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, the second largest airport in Nigeria, served 2,140,452 (29.5% of total air passengers) in the first half of 2018 (1,021,906 in Q1 2018, and 1,118,546 in Q2 2018). During this period (HY 2018), 80% of the passengers who travelled through the Abuja airport were domestic passengers, while 20% were travelling internationally.
Port Harcourt, Kano, and Owerri airports which recorded 520,930 (7.2%), 261,355 (3.6%), and 246,607 (3.4%) in the first two quarters of 2018 round up the top airports for passenger traffic during the first half of 2018.
Figure 5. Numbers of Domestic and International Passenger at Top 10 Airport 2018 Q1& Q2
Figure 6. Numbers of Domestic and International Passenger at Top 10 Airport 2017 Q1- 2018 Q2
While the total number of air passengers traveling through Nigerian airports recorded an aggregate increase in the first two quarters of 2018, the total number of aircraft movements declined within the same periods by an aggregate of 5.9%. Air craft movement recorded in the Q1 2018 (49,497) declined by 13.89% on a quarter-on-quarter basis and by 1.48% on a year-on-year basis. Among the 49,497 aircraft movement in Q1, 83.31% were flying on domestic routes, and 16.69% were flying international routes. The decline in aircraft movement and increase in numbers of air passengers highlight improvements in efficiency within the air transportation sector.
The declining trend in aircraft movement continued in the second quarter of 2018, with the total number of aircraft movement being recorded at 47,162. This was a further decline of 4.72% from Q1 this year and of 10.17% from the same quarter last year. Notably, aircraft movement continued to decline in the second quarter even as the number of air passengers grew within the period when compared to the same period last year (Q2 2017), indicating sustained improvements in efficiency through the first half of 2018.
Figure 7. Domestic and International Aircraft Movement 2017 Q1- 2018 Q2
Aircraft Movement by Airport
Abuja airport recorded the highest number of aircraft traffic in the first half of 2018 (32,011), slightly higher than the Lagos airport which recorded aircraft traffic of 31,037. In Q1 2018, aircraft movement at Abuja airport (16,402) exceeded that of aircraft movement in Lagos (15,866), and it maintained the marginal dominance over Lagos airport in the second quarter of 2018 (15,609 at Abuja compared with 15,171 at Lagos). This increase in the dominance of Abuja airport for aircraft movement contrasts with the sharp decline in aircraft movement recorded at Lagos airports in the first two quarters of the year. Although Lagos recorded a substantial growth in a total number of air passengers in Q1 2018, the number of aircrafts dropped to 15,866 in the same period, a 30.84% decline from the 22,939 aircrafts recorded in the previous quarter (Q4 2017).
Figure 8. Aircraft Traffic at Top 10 Airport 2018 Q1 & Q2
The first two quarters of 2018 recorded a total of 23,023,291 KG and 28,920,555 KG cargo movement respectively through Nigerian airports, an aggregate 37.8% decline from the same quarters last year (HY 2017). The first quarter in 2018 continued the decreasing trend of cargo movement from previous quarters, as the total cargo movement within the quarter declined by 31.12% on a quarter-on-quarter basis, and by 44.47% compared to the same period last year (Q1 2017). In Q2 2018, the weight of cargo movement recovered and increased by 25.61% on a quarter-on-quarter basis, but still declined by 31.21% when compared to the same period last year (Q2 2017).
In the first quarter of 2018, unloaded cargo accounted for 36.41% of all cargo recorded, while loaded cargo accounted for 63% of all cargo. In contrast, unloaded cargo accounted for 51.52% of total cargo accounted for in the second quarter of 2018, while loaded cargo for the same quarter stood at 48.48% of total cargo. This represented a 77.7% increase in unloaded cargo weight recorded in Q2 2018 (14,639,528 KG) from the figure recorded in Q1 2018 (8,383,763 KG).
Cargo Movement by Airport
Lagos remained the commercial hub in Nigeria and it recorded the most substantial volume of cargo movement in Q1 2018. The amount of cargo moved through the Lagos airports in the first quarter recorded 18,790,451 KG, among which 69.90% (13,135,382 KG) were loaded, and 30.10% (5,655,070 KG) were unloaded. In this same quarter (Q1 2018), Lagos accounted for 90.31% of the total cargo traffic by air. The rest of the cargo traffic was through Kano, Abuja and Port Harcourt, which recorded 2,870,473 KG, 827,688 KG, and 534,678 KG respectively.
In the second quarter, Lagos recorded 12,931,861 KG cargo traffic, followed by Port Harcourt which recorded 10,746,587 KG cargo movement in the same quarter – a significant growth from the 534,678 KGs recorded in the previous quarter. Kano rounded the top 3 airports for cargo movement in Q2 2018, with a recorded 3,532,335 KGs total cargo moved within the period. Notably, Enugu airport recorded no cargo traffic in the first half of 2018.
Figure 9. Loading and Unloading Cargo Traffic by Airport 2017 Q1- 2018 Q2
Total mail traffic for the first half of 2018 increased from 14,779,558 KG in HY 2017, to 19,831,650 KG in HY 2018, a 34.2% growth between the stated periods. Total mail for Q1 2018 was recorded at 8,313,112 KG and grew by 38.56% to 11,518,538 KG in Q2 2018.
The international airport in Lagos remained the most prominent airport for mail movement in the two reviewing quarters. The weight of mail moved through Lagos totaled 8,308,639 KG (7,446,305 KG loaded, and 862,334 KG unloaded) in Q1 2018, a decline 34.14% from the fourth quarter in 2017. Both loaded and unloaded mail movement through Lagos airport grew in the second quarter of 2018 with a reported 11,501,367 KG mail movement, a robust 38.43% growth from the previous quarter. Lagos accounted for 94.9% of total mail traffic in the first quarter of 2018, and 99.9% of total mail traffic in the second quarter.
Mail movement through Abuja International Airport stood at 4,473 KG and 17,171 KG in the first two quarters of 2018 respectively, which were much less than the 326,643 KG and 270,993 KG recorded in the same quarters the previous year (Q1 and Q2 2017 respectively).
Figure 10. Loading and Unloading Mail Traffic by Airport 2017 Q1- 2018 Q2
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