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IMPACT OF AIR TRANSPORT SECTOR TO ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA USING MURTALA MUHAMMED INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT AS A CASE STUDY

AIR TRANSPORT MANAGEMENT PROJECT TOPICS

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background to the study

Travelling by has air remained one of the most vital transportation innovations of the twentieth century and it has continued to evolve over the years. It enabled the move- ment of passengers and cargoes in the shortest time and also promoted the demand for both short and long-haul trips. In fact, every part of the world could be accessed by means of airplanes within a 24-hour time frame and thereby promoting globalization. Air transportation has over the decades managed to gain a remarkable market share of the transportation sector in the tourism industry. With the increased number of peo- ple travelling every day by airplanes for different purposes, air transportation would continue to take a central stage in the tourism industry. It has become a very signifi- cant sector of tourism today. It is believed that air transportation has contributed in no small measure in making the world a global village, in other words, it has been a major player in the globalization process.

Air transportation is principally the use of airplanes to convey passengers and cargoes from one point to another and it is a fast evolving sector. Passengers more often than not are predominantly tourists. The tourism industry is interactive and dynamic in na- ture and air transport has remained a major player within the industry. Travelling by air has been made easier and more affordable owing to the emergence of budget airlines (Low Cost Carriers) competing with the legacy airlines (Full Service Airlines) and this practically altered the air travel market. Air transportation is susceptible to technological advancements and this over the years has continually changed the face of air trav- el in different dimensions. These changes cut across both technical (hardware, engi- neering and safety) and service delivery (software – customer service) fronts. Besides, information technology is believed to be the future of air transportation and tourism in general.

However, air transportation is a highly technology driven sector with its challenges and these are factors that affect its operations within the tourism industry. The tourism market is a very vast market and the demand for tourism services has increased tre- mendously, especially with air transportation in focus. There are factors that affect air

transport and they include, but are not limited to; air safety standards, terrorism, cost  of operation, competition, natural disaster, economic recession, epidemics and pan- demics, and all this is evident in today`s air transportation management.

The main aim of this thesis is to analyze the economic impact of air transportation in a region. It involved studying how the air transport business has affected the lives of the people in the region of Lagos economically.

Statement of the Problem

The negative impact of air transport can be looked into through the aspect of air pollution to a region, especially emissions of the airplane when taking off from the airport to a particular destination which actually make airports some of the biggest sources of these pollutants and major public health hazards. Based on the wonderful feature of hurling hundreds of thousands of people, baggage, and aluminium thousands of miles at high speed by consuming a large amount of fossils fuels, airplanes dump huge amounts of toxic pollution over different homes and into the atmosphere every day which is quite dangerous to human’s health. A fully laden A380, according to its engine maker Rolls Royce, uses as much energy as 3,500 family cars for each passenger. Long haul flights generate on average twice as much emission per mile travelled per passenger than cars and short haul flight produce three times as much (flyingclean.com 2014).

The consumption of airplane fuel produces carbon emissions as by product, in addition to carbon-dioxide, sulphates, nitrogen oxides and particulate matter, all of which extend the impact of aviation on global warming. Air transport sends out all these pollutants directly into the atmosphere, compounding the warming impact of the pollutants. This pollution moves miles downwind, adding to lot of health diseases like asthma, heart and lung disease couple with huge number of cancers. The combined negative effect of all these pollutant multiplies the global warming impact of aviation, making aviation currently responsible for an estimated 5-10% of global climate pollution (flyingclean.com 2014).

Another example of negative impact of air transport can be seen as noise pollution. The airplanes generate a lot of noise which always cause distraction as well as it can cause heart attack to humans. These noises are caused by two specific parts from an aircraft which are the airframe and the engine. The airframe noise happens when air passes over the body and the wings of the airplanes, which definitely causes friction and turbulence and make a noise. Engine noise is said to be created by the sound from the moving parts of the engine, it also makes noise by the air being discharged at high speed once it has passed through the engine. The noise mostly comes from the exhaust or jet behind the engine as it dilutes with the air around it (gatwickairport.com 2014). Introduction of crime is also one of the negative impacts of the region. Some organized crime groups use a lot of different methods to destroy the aviation industry. They use the mode of importing illegal goods in small but frequent amounts, also using air cargo to import or export large quantities of illegal drugs and other goods in and out of different region or countries. The group of criminals destroys entry points depending on level of airport security, vetting and screening. They usually conceal illegal goods in regular personal or commercial movement. The criminals in some ways control the activity from outside the sector, or by group member to penetrate the sector where they can destroy vulnerabilities, corrupt officials, bypass security and use their criminal innate at the aviation environment. The criminal groups may as well have security cleared groups working in air cargo and freight organizations. There are some groups also called “terrorists”. They usually attack airlines with fighting weapons like ammunition and bombs. These create tremendous anxiety and fear to people in the world using air transport as their means of transportation. (crimecommission.gov.au 2014)

Objectives of the Study

The objective of this report is to examine the importance of air transport in a region and identify main visible impacts of air transport in general and the Lagos region in particular.

Scope of the Study

The economy of Lagos and the Murtala Muhammed Airport business activities will be discussed in the research work. The positive and the negative aspects of air transport in the region will also be considered to gain a better understanding of the subject. Also, the globalisation process and tourism in the region of Lagos will be considered in the report.

Research Methods

In accomplishing this task, the writer will use the qualitative method of interview as the primary data source but may face the challenge of securing all the required information from the interviewees. The theoretical part will consider secondary data sources like eBooks, textbooks and web pages.

Significance of the study

The study is justified by the need to provide empirical understanding of the impact of transportation infrastructure improvement to the economic growth of Nigeria and how it influences the development process. Thus, there is no doubt that transportation is essential in operation of a market economy; Planners needs guidance based on solid grounds, to aid in their decision to improve existing transportation and build new infrastructure. As stated by Boopen(2006), Transport improvement have opportunity cost in terms of alternative investment that can be carried out by the government. To ensure that resources are well allocated, policy makers need to have empirical base on which to draw their plan. An empirical knowledge of how transportation infrastructure improvement will affect economic growth need to be established so that adequate plan can be made for the transport sector. Also, there is the need to have a direct linkage between transport infrastructure and economic growth, in which prediction can be made to determine the level of transport investment that can achieve a desired level of economic growth.

If capital improvements in transportation facilities lead to greater development than when capital is used in other areas, then planner should realize the benefits to be gained by developing the transportation infrastructure. If on other hand, capital improvement in transportation facilities cannot be linked to economic performance, then scarce resource could, perhaps, be put to better use. There is therefore the need to examine the linkage between transport infrastructure and the economic growth of developing countries, particularly Nigeria, in order to help policy makers formulate policies that will favour the transport sector to enhance growth of economy. To the people, this study will enlighten them more on the important of having a better transport system; To students and researchers, this study reveal the current situation in the sector by adding to the work done by other researcher so as to provide base for future research; To the policy maker this study will reveal the state of transport infrastructure across the country making them known that more funds and implementation of policy already made is needed critically to be in place in the sector.

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