FAAN: ‘Local airlines will merge to form a national carrier’
The Managing Director of the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Mr George Uriesi, shed some light on the plans of the Federal Government to assist local airlines. First of all, he explained that the national airline being set up by the Ministry of Aviation will emerge from a merger of domestic airlines in March 2013:
The Federal Government will not launch a new national carrier but it will help some new companies’ access funding to build a new national carrier. A couple of airlines will merge by March 2013 to emerge as the national carrier. [The] conditions that will enhance these developments are currently being put together.
Secondly, he denied that the Federal Government will set up an aircraft leasing company or distribute aircraft among the local airlines. Rather, the Federal Government will assist airlines in negotiating and funding the acquisition of new aeroplanes:
The Federal Government of Nigeria is not buying any number of aircraft that as being rumoured about. The government is just negotiating with aircraft manufacturers to supply brand new aircraft at globally competitive price to Nigerian airlines and funds to make the purchase will be provided by the government.
Watch the full interview here.