Passenger flow at Tbilisi Airport reduces by 14%, at Batumi – by 20% due to ban on Georgia – Russia air service

In January-August 2019, Georgian airports served 3,640.8 thousand passengers, which is by 8% more, as compared to the same period in 2018, Interfax reported with reference to the Georgian Airports Association (GAA) under the Ministry of Economic Development, Georgia.

At the same time, in August 2019, instead of the expected growth by 14%, the passenger flow fell by 11% down to 583.1 thousand people, which is explained by the ban imposed by Russia on July 8 to operate direct flights to/from Georgia. According to the GAA, in August, 397 thousand people used the services of the Tbilisi International Airport, which is by 14% less than in August 2018, passenger traffic at Batumi International Airport decreased by 20% down to 96.5 thousand people.

“The Kutaisi International Airport is the only one, as it was least affected by the suspension of flights with Russia, and, as a result, its passenger traffic increased by 22% in August and achieved 88.1 thousand people,” the statement reads.

For eight months (Jan – Aug) of 2019, the airport in Tbilisi served 2,651.9 thousand passengers (an increase by 3%), Batumi – 444.3 thousand passengers (an increase by 5%), Kutaisi – 538.2 thousand passengers (an increase by 41%).

As regards domestic airports operating in Mestia (the highland region of Svaneti) and Ambrolauri (the administrative center of the region with the same name in the mountain region of Racha-Lechkhumi), passenger traffic increased by 16% and amounted to 6.4 thousand people in total.

As reported, due to the aggravation of Russian-Georgian relations, according to the decision of the Russian authorities on July 8, 2019, both Russian and Georgian airlines were temporarily prohibited from operating direct flights between the two countries. Prior to this, in 2019, over 40 airlines operated on the Georgian civil aviation market in 2019, including eight Russian airlines, such as Aeroflot and its Pobeda Group, S7 Airlines, Ural Airlines, Smartavia (the new brand for Nordavia Airlines), Red Wings, UTair and Severstal. The latter has operated just a few flights to Georgia.

In 2018, Georgian airports served 5,033.3 thousand passengers, which is by 23.6% more than in the previous year.

Source – https://www.aex.ru/

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