Operators Groan Over 110.5 Per Cent Rise In Aviation Fuel Price

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Domestic airline operators are groaning over an astronomical increase in the price of aviation fuel, also called Jet A 1.

The price of the commodity has increased from N190 per litre to N400 per litre in the last one year.

The hike, which translates to over 110.5 per cent in the price of the commodity, according to airlines, is having a negative impact on their operations, especially in the cost component in fixing airfares.

Addressing reporters yesterday in Lagos, Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of United Nigeria Airlines, High Chief Obiora Okonkwo said running airlines business under such cost arrangement is increasingly becoming unprofitable.

He said the current cost regime, where aviation fuel constitutes between 30 to 40 per cent of the cost components, puts pressure on airlines to adjust airfares to enable them run a cost recovery operation.

Okonkwo also said airlines were grappling with other challenges in their operations.

The airline chief executive listed some of the challenges airlines face as increasing exchange rates, inadequate airport infrastructure/facilities as well as the scheduling of flights, which are determined by airports that operate flights before sunset..

 

Domestic airline operators are groaning over an astronomical increase in the price of aviation fuel, also called Jet A 1.

The price of the commodity has increased from N190 per litre to N400 per litre in the last one year.

The hike, which translates to over 110.5 per cent in the price of the commodity, according to airlines, is having a negative impact on their operations, especially in the cost component in fixing airfares.

Addressing reporters yesterday in Lagos, Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of United Nigeria Airlines, High Chief Obiora Okonkwo said running airlines business under such cost arrangement is increasingly becoming unprofitable.

He said the current cost regime, where aviation fuel constitutes between 30 to 40 per cent of the cost components, puts pressure on airlines to adjust airfares to enable them run a cost recovery operation.

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Okonkwo also said airlines were grappling with other challenges in their operations.

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The airline chief executive listed some of the challenges airlines face as increasing exchange rates, inadequate airport infrastructure/facilities as well as the scheduling of flights, which are determined by airports that operate flights before sunset.

To save the carriers from the current situation, Okonkwo said there is need for special funding for the sector and urgent attention.

“From the ticket, salaries paid to workers have increased; costs have increased. But tickets have not increased that much, compared to the cost of operations. Operators are looking for solutions to many of these things. We can’t talk about safety without looking at rising costs,” he said.

The airline chairman warned that Jet A1 cost might even rise to N500 per litre before March.

Okonkwo said there should be adjustments in the ticket price to bridge the rising cost.

The airline boss warned that if the situation does not change for the better, “the aviation industry will collapse”..

 

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