By Alimamy Jalloh@awokonewspaper.sl
The Director General of the Sierra Leone Aviation Authority, Musayeroh Barrie has responded on Tuesday during a press briefing that the flight cost, Air travel tremendous increase is due to external, internal and lack of competition in the Sierra Leone Aviation.
Some of the factors responsible which led to the exponential increase she mentioned was that majority of flights that arrive in Sierra Leone, most often take two days or weeks before they arrive. That according to her, create an effects on the reduction of flights coming.
Another is the rate of passenger’s volume which also contribute to the cost of ticket increase. This means, she described, the volume of passengers travelling from Guinea is far greater compared to Sierra Leone.
Madam Barrie also factored on the cost of Air ticket noting that there is very limited competition on external flight to Sierra Leone. The number of flights coming from European countries is three (3) and in Guinea Conakry is 14 flights.
This also determines the price of air ticket she noted. “We did a booking recently on Brussels Airlines, SM Brussels, and Air Moroc including Turkish Airline-these Airlines will be travelling on the 31st October, 2023.The cost of their ticket is 1,871 dollars. Out that cost only 139 dollars is government taxes” she told the press.
Other component of the taxes on tickets Director General emphasized include the airline base fare, departure taxes from the point of transit countries and point of arrival among few. She admitted that all those taxes and activities combined are reasons for the increment of Sierra Leone Air tickets overall both externally and internally. “We want revive regional and domestic flights”
Concerning those taxes, they would be undertaken a holistic approach to fix the challenges but will take some time to overcome it the Director General stated.
In response to the Air ticket concerns, both the Minister of Transport and Director General said the overall increase in August is 5% and generally is 4%.All flights landing in Sierra Leone 7 or 4 the minister explained have already shared their information of their domestic taxes they paid when they come.
They are awaiting other flight to share theirs he added.Minister of Transport and Aviation further that in 2022 they recorded 4637 passenger who travel on flight out of the country.
Whilst in 2022 also 78437 travel in the country. In 2023 he said the Aviation recorded 97261 who travel out of the country. And 84652 travel in the country. AJ/26/10/2023