Minister Festus Keyamo made a significant announcement in Abuja during the Seventh Aviation Africa Summit and Exhibition 2023.
He articulated the Federal Government’s commitment to positioning Nigeria as the foremost aviation hub on the African continent.
Keyamo’s statement underscored the administration’s eagerness to address the various challenges that currently exist within the aviation sector. The primary objective is to create a conducive environment that would allure foreign investors and facilitate the growth and development of the aviation industry in Nigeria. This strategic move is part of the government’s broader vision to elevate Nigeria’s standing in the African aviation landscape.
“The government is already looking at aircraft leasing company, aircraft maintenance organisation, forex availability, and tax holidays to improve the aviation business in Nigeria.”
These ambitious plans encompass a range of initiatives aimed at enhancing Nigeria’s aviation infrastructure. They involve the modernization of the CAT III landing system at major airports, the construction of a second runway in Abuja, and airport improvement schemes facilitated by concessions.
Additionally, the government is open to collaborating with private enterprises to transform major airports into thriving aerotropolises, aligning with its vision to bolster the aviation sector’s capacity and capabilities.
“The government welcomes major players in aircraft leasing and head lessors to invest in Nigeria airlines to provide state-of-the-art aircraft,” he said.
Keyamo emphasized that the government is committed to upholding contract agreements and safeguarding the rights of investors. He assured that all parties involved would be protected, citing Nigeria’s adherence to the Cape Town Convention, which underscores international responsibilities.
Additionally, the minister highlighted the significance of a Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) facility as a pivotal element that could solidify Nigeria’s position as an aviation hub in Africa.
“With the shortage of qualified engineers, the current administration is willing to provide all the necessary support for the establishment of a world-class MROS and training organisation. The current administration is aware that one of the setbacks entrepreneurs have suffered in Nigeria in recent years is the fluctuation of foreign exchange and its availability.
“This administration is committed to ensuring that forex is readily available to entrepreneurs, and I have directed that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) hold quarterly reconciliation meetings with a view to resolve this issue,” he said.