There is increasing concern about the increased volume of passengers using Ercan airport Hermes Airports spokesman, Adamos Aspris has said.
Calls have been made for the Greek Cypriot government to intervene in the hope of limiting the potential financial damage this phenomenon is causing because it receives 33 per cent of the revenue from Cyprus’ international airports.
According the Greek newspaper ‘Phileleftheros’, statistics released by the Turkish Cypriot authorities reveal that Ercan airport handled 1,646 flights last November. This more than double the number of flights for Paphos in the same period, 619, and comes close to the 2,200 flights handled by Larnaca that month.
The paper reported that 204,208 passengers passed through Ercan last November, compared to 102,110 who passed through Paphos airport and 252,870 Larnaca.
In reference to questions about Greek Cypriots travelling through the north, Aspris replied: “Unfortunately, it is true that a significant proportion of passengers choose to travel through Tymbou [Ercan] and that is sad.”
“We find ourselves before a considerable dynamic which appears to be evolving in a dangerous manner and causing significant damage to the economic and general interests of the country,” he added.
Aspris argued that if the statistics published by the TRNC are correct, then Ercan has seen a steady increase in passenger traffic over the last few years, something which is a cause for concern for the international airports of the south.
“We are monitoring carefully the development of the illegal airport at Tymbou [Ercan] and the recent efforts of the breakaway regime to upgrade the illegal airport,” said Aspris