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Tuesday, March 28, 2023

FG Begins Talks with Airlines over Trapped Funds

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The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed has said relevant authorities are working towards addressing issues concerning revenue of foreign airlines that have been trapped in Nigeria, put at over $600 million.

Speaking during a facility tour at the new international terminal of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, yesterday, the minister said: “On the trapped funds, I can tell you that the relevant authorities are working hard on that issue.”

Emirates Airlines last week announced that it would stop all scheduled operations to Nigeria from September 1, 2022, if no action was taken by government to address airline’s revenues which it had been unable to repatriate, that have risen to about $95 million.

There are also indications that other foreign airlines might review their operations to Nigeria over their inability to repatriate their earnings from the country.

On delayed commencement of flight operations at the new Lagos terminal, the minister said there was need to first test-run the facility and be extremely certain that the equipment was working optimally before the terminal would be put to use.

“I was here 40 years ago when the first terminal was commissioned. There is a time between the commissioning of an airport and when the airport becomes operational. You know aviation is unforgiven of any mistake. So we need to test-run and be extremely certain that every equipment is working optimally,” Mohammed said.

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