FAAN: Recurring monthly losses, a sign of an uncertain future after COVID-19

The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) said it lost N17.5billion of aeronautic charges in 23 weeks and incurred N1.4 billion loss of non-aeronautical charges between April and June, 2020.

Its Managing Director, Capt. Hamisu Yadudu, who disclosed this in a virtual interaction said the agency’s Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) dipped by over 90 per cent in the last six months due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

He said the agency’s loss in the last few months is huge compared to the same period last year.

He said compared to last year, only 8.7 per cent of the agency’s non-aeronautical revenue charges were collected from April to June, this year, adding that as a result of the pandemic, FAAN customers were not only defaulting in  payment for services rendered to them but that there  was an increase in request for payment suspension, deferral and waivers

He said 87 per cent of the 2020 budget overhead cost was wiped out in six months with up to 95 per cent decline in weekly revenues.

Yadudu said notwithstanding, the challenges posed by COVID-19 on FAAN’s revenue, the agency has ensured that local airports under its management commenced domestic operations after meeting the requirements set by Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19.

He said it was upon meeting the conditions prescribed that the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and other regulatory agencies cleared airports to reopen.

Yadudu said during the lockdown, its managers opened airports that were involved in evacuation flight arrangements.

This, according to him, further made the agency incur cost on maintenance and utilities despite the total decline in traffic as well as revenue.

“In spite of the drastic drop in revenue, FAAN has managed to ensure that all its local airports have commenced domestic operations having met the requirements by Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, NCAA and other regulatory bodies and have been issued clearance to reopen.

” Fewer  passengers and limited income even with the resumption of international operations  has affected our revenue stream. All these are issues of great concern to the authority and partly what has necessitated the need for all our stakeholders to rub minds on strategies to adapt to ensure that the industry remains in operation to provide the very much needed service,” Yadudu said.

t was gathered that other agencies, including Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), also lost significant revenue in the last few months, which would have accrued to the regulator as five per cent of supposed tickets sold by both domestic, and international airlines.

NCAA, statutorily collects Ticket Sales Charge and Cargo Sales Charge.

Another agency – Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), also lost billions of naira that would have accrued to it as en route navigation charge , terminal navigation charge for the services it would rendered to airlines that did not operate during the ban on international flights while ground handling companies also lost significant revenue during the pandemic.

The Association of Aviation Ground Handlers (AGHAN) said operators in the sub sector lost  about N20 billion  by the end of June, due to the lockdown.

The association said its members have been hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, which has devastated the global economy since the beginning of the year.

AGHAN membership comprises the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) Plc, the Skyway Aviation Handling Company (SAHCO) and Aviation Handling Services (AHS).

Checks by The Nation revealed that Nigeria Immigration Services (NIS) lost millions of naira that would have accrued for payments for Visa on Arrival , resident permits and other documents in the months there was ban on international scheduled flights.