Al-Rajhi revealed in an interview with “Al-Rai”, the negative effects of the “Year of Corona” (2020) on the airport, documenting this with official figures, which showed that the total number of passengers traveling through Kuwait International Airport decreased by 75%, equivalent to 11.57 million passengers..
He said, “Kuwait Airport witnessed a decrease in the number of flights during the same year by 64.2%, equivalent to 74.178 thousand flights, while the movement of cargo planes doubled during 2020 by 268%, an increase of 5646 flights. However, the volume of cargo operations witnessed a decrease in quantities by a rate of 20.”%”.
Al-Rajhi explained that the total number of passengers who traveled through the airport during the year 2019 amounted to about 15.448 million passengers, of whom 7.715 million are arrivals, and 7.733 million departures, while the total number of passengers in 2020 decreased to 3.875 million passengers, of whom the share of arriving passengers reached 1.835 million. Passengers, Departures 2.039 million passengers.
Likewise, the number of transit passengers who crossed from Kuwait Airport decreased by 82%, including 86,791 thousand passengers, reaching 19,145 thousand passengers in 2020, compared to 105,936 thousand in 2019..
Regarding commercial aviation, Al-Raji explained that the number of flights during 2020 decreased by 64.2%, equivalent to 74.178 thousand flights, as the number of flights reached 41,242 thousand flights, compared with 115.42 thousand flights in 2019..
The movement of cargo planes doubled during 2020 by 268%, an increase of 5,646 flights, reaching about 7,752 air cargo flights in 2020, compared to 2,106 flights in 2019..
Regarding the complaints and violations recorded by the sector in 2020 compared to 2019, Al-Rajhi said that the number of complaints in 2019 amounted to about 1964 complaints, while the number of those complaints increased to 2827 in 2020, and the number of violations received from the Immigration Department at the Ministry of Interior related to problems with entry visa, Or that the validity of the passport is less than 6 months, so its number during 2019 reached 128 violations, which decreased to 66 in 2020.
Al-Rajhi explained that the total air transport agreements signed by Kuwait amount to about 132 agreements, 40 of which are signed by initials and awaiting a complete translation to become final and complete, in addition to 92 signed in full..
He added that the Air Transport Administration is making unremitting efforts to sign air transport agreements with the largest number of countries. This is in line with Kuwait’s economic plans and the development the air transport sector is witnessing in the country.