The recent hike in cost of operation among airlines, ground,cargo handling companies and other business operators across Nigerian airports have generated fresh concerns.
The concerns have renewed fears of job losses in the industry as some operators are said to be bent on cutting down on staff strength and other ancillary service providers to reduce their wage bill.
Specifically, the operators are worried about the high cost of operations occasioned by excessive and, in some cases, multiple taxes and fees allegedly imposed by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN).
The operators said they were also disenchanted with what they called “regular change in tariffs,” which they alleged was often done without recourse to transparency.
For instance, they complained about car permit fees charged at the toll gates; amount paid for car stickers for the parks; fees paid for apron pass stickers; airside drivers’ licence fee, and the rent for office space (charged per square metre), among others.
It was learnt that in Lagos, for instance, workers of firms operating within the airport, who pass through the access roads and toll plaza, pay N12, 500 for the access sticker per annum.
At the Hadji Camp gate, regardless of whether a worker has passed through the main toll gate within the airport environment, the employee still has to part with N10,000 per annum. The camp gate is a distance of less than 100 metres from the main toll gate.
At the stakeholders’ car park along the main road leading to the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, it is N15,000 for a car per annum. At the MM2 car park, it is N44, 000 for worker’s car per annum to obtain the pass.
At the car park opposite Skypower Aviation Handling Company Limited headquarters, agents with FAAN tickets collect an average of N300 per vehicle entry.
To access the apron pass for one operational vehicle, it costs N150,000. And where a company has several vehicles being used for its services perhaps due to the volume of operation, such firm bears the resulting cost implication on all.
The airside drivers’ licence costs N50, 000 per worker while the renewal attracts N25, 000. The access card to restricted areas such as tarmac and arrival hall, where sensitive operations of companies are mostly done, is said to cost N25, 000 for the number of workers that will man or operate in such area.
At the Lagos airport, the rent per square metre for an office space had been pegged at N149,021,723.75 per annum. In Kano, it is about N20,247,000; in Port Harcourt, it is about N22,042,396.80; while in Abuja, it is about N13,494,060.
These fees are said to be adversely affecting the operators’ profits.