The Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) says it is expecting revenue target to drop by a 20 percent following the ban on travels into and from the country amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Alternatively, the Director General of GCAA, Ing. Simon Allotey, says the authority will be looking at other means to make up for the anticipated shortfall.
“What we need to do is to sit down, re-strategise and take measures to reduce operational costs. Certain projects which are not critical could be put on hold, and we also need to look at staff costs and expenses”, he explained.
He added that “there are further stringent measures we will take to try to minimize expenses as we do not want to shut down the airport which could lead to the laying off of workers”.
Following the increase in the number of cases of coronavirus infections recorded in Ghana, that is from two to six, the government issued a number of directives aimed at containing and reducing the spread of the disease.
The measures included a ban on flights carrying passengers other than Ghanaian citizens from any of the countries that have recorded high cases of the coronavirus disease.
This means that passengers scheduled to fly into Ghana from countries like the UK, China, Italy, Brazil, Austria, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany cannot do so until such a time that the restrictions are revised.
GCAA operations affected
But this necessary precautionary measure seems to pose a huge economic impact on the GCAA, as air travel has reduced drastically.
Ing. Allotey, laments on how the flight ban is affecting their operations.
“Airports Company depends largely on charges levied on airport passenger charges, while the GCAA also depends on landing fees, en route charges for aircraft overflying Ghana’s airspace and the passenger safety charge.
“So once passenger numbers drop, there will be a corresponding decrease in passenger safety charge. For now, we can generally say there will be at least 20% dip as the situation improves or deteriorates, there could be either a further increase or decrease,” he remarked.