Domestic airlines in Nigeria are in for a difficult time as oil marketers in the aviation sector have astronomically increased price of aviation fuel. Daily Times investigation revealed that after a meeting of the oil marketers on Tuesday, it was agreed that the current price of N115 per litre be jerked up by 30 percent to N150. The increase, our correspondent learnt, will affect the airfare in the country as airlines before now have been faced with problem of aviation fuel that has led to cancellations and delays. With the present increase, airlines will find it difficult to meet their operational targets as aviation fuel form the bulk of day to day running cost of airlines.
Although the increase in airfare may not take effect immediately, the airlines are required to get approval from the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) before any increment is made. Airlines in the past have been engaged in running battle with the oil marketers over aviation fuel prices. Speaking to the Daily Times, General Manager, Public Affairs of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Mr. Sam Adurogboye, said the agency has not been notified about the increase in the price of aviation fuel. Adurogboye said the airlines were at liberty to increase airfare but must be subject approval NCAA.
He said the problem was not peculiar to Nigeria but all over the world, adding that some countries have also adjusted their oil prices. Adurogboye said the increase in oil prices have forced some global airlines to withdraw their operations to other countries. Meanwhile, Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) will be meeting today (Thursday) to deliberate on the next line of action but it was gathered that they will be forced to increase airfare after meeting with the management of NCAA.