Chinedu Eze in Lagos and Kasim Sumaina in Abuja
World’s biggest airliner manufacturer, Airbus has projected that air transport would continue to grow by at least five per cent annually in Nigeria over the next 20 years.
This was in line with the International Air Transport Association (IATA), whose record of air transport in Nigeria indicated that the sector has created 241, 000 jobs with $1.7 billion contribution to GDP, which was 0.4 per cent of the GDP.
Airbus projected that the transport industry would also grow by over four per cent yearly in Africa between 2019 and 2042.
Airline Marketing Director, Africa, Airbus, Joep Ellers, stated this yesterday in Abuja.
According to Ellers, air transportation was a major contributor to Nigeria’s economy and needed the cooperation of all for the sector to thrive.
He also said passenger traffic in Nigeria would increase by 2. 9 per cent over 2019-2042, stressing that additional 159 aircraft would be needed to serve the Nigerian market within the same period.
He projected that North America traffic would grow in Nigeria by 3.3 per cent in the next 20 years, while traffic between Europe and the country would grow by 3 per cent within the same period.
Ellers, also projected that the traffic would increase by 4. 7 per cent between Nigeria and Latin America, adding that the traffic is estimated to grow by 5.1 per cent between Nigeria and the other African countries.
The traffic would increase at 4.5 per cent between the country and the Middle East, while it grows at 5.6 per cent at Asia Pacific.
Ellers added that for the African continent, air transportation would grow faster than the world’s average, stressing that this would be bolster by the continent’s growing population, which is put as the fastest in the world.
He further stressed that this would be boosted by urbanisation and middle class development, attractiveness of inbound tourism and the potential from the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM), which has been adopted by most countries on the continent.
He also estimated that Africa would require additional 1,180 aircraft between 2019 and 2042, while at least 75 per cent of such aircraft, representing 880 would be typical single-aisle and 300 of such airplanes would be wide-body.
This he said represented 25 per cent of the total airplanes that would be required on the continent within the period.
He added: “Between 2019 and 2042, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will grow by 3.3 per cent yearly in Africa, while its population would increase by 831 million with the same period.