Norwegian airport operator Avinor reported passenger traffic of 44.7 million at its airports in the full year ended 31 December 2022, a 99% jump from 2021.

However, the volumes were 17% less when compared with 2019 figures.

In the first six months of 2022, the tourism segment registered the highest increase. The business traveller segment had a ‘substantial’ growth in the second half.

The operator said that these two segments were at an ‘almost equal level’, though still trailed behind 2019 numbers.

Avinor’s operating revenues in 2022 amounted to Nkr10.3bn ($1.01bn), up 11.5% from the prior year.

Operating expenses rose 13.2% to Nkr9.6bn ($949m) from Nkr8.4bn ($830m) over this period.

The group recorded a profit after tax of Nkr402m ($39m) in 2022, versus Nkr208m in the previous year.

The number of aircraft movements in 2022 soared 27% compared with 2021, though it remained 9% lower than 2019.

Avinor executive vice-president Abraham Foss said: “Consequences of changes in travel habits, uncertainty due to the war in Ukraine, high inflation, a long waiting time for Norwegian passports, increased interest rates and industrial action and capacity issues in aviation, have contributed to traffic failing to return to pre-pandemic levels.

“Scaling up operations to meet increased traffic volumes is carefully balanced against increased operating costs. In addition, the project portfolio is being continuously assessed and prioritised. An extraordinarily strong increase in prices for building and construction projects represents an increased risk in Avinor’s project portfolio.”