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Forex For Airline: Tinubu Directs CBN To Hold Quarterly Reconciliatory Meetings

President Bola Tinubu has directed the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to hold quarterly reconciliatory meetings with airline operators, especially foreign airlines, and other entrepreneurs to address the challenges associated with the unavailability of foreign exchange.

Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Mr Festus Keyamo, who revealed this yesterday also apologised to foreign airlines over their blocked funds in Nigeria.

He spoke at the 7th African Aviation Summit and Exhibition in Abuja even as the minister itemised five areas of focus to improve aviation business in Nigeria.

The areas itemised included the Aerotropolis, Aircraft Leasing Company (ALC) and Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility, forex availability, and tax holidays.

Keyamo who declared the summit open said the federal government is addressing the challenges associated with foreign exchange supply being faced by entrepreneurs.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) had cried out over the inability of foreign airlines to repatriate their funds amounting to over $500m. It was as a result of the trapped funds that Emirates Airlines suspended flights to Nigeria.

The minister noted that the president has  directed that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) holds quarterly reconciliation meetings with a view to resolving this issue.

He said the current administration is open to providing tax holidays to encourage existing and new entrants into the Nigerian Aviation Sector.

He said, “As you are all aware, air transport remains an essential component of the global transportation system and it’s a crucial driver of economic, social and cultural development worldwide. Air transport generates economic growth and development, provides jobs and fosters a range of socio-economic benefits.

The discussion centered on the implementation of the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM), one of the flagship projects of the African Union.

Director General of Civil Aviation of Nigeria, Capt. Musa Nuhu, called for regulatory and policy harmonisation in African countries to hasten the implementation of SAATM.

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