Nigerian airlines need urgent help – Aero contractors

A Nigerian airline, the Aero Contractors says the aviation industry is in a crisis and needs urgent attention. TheCornet reports that Aero Contractors had indicated that it would not take part in a previously planned strike by airlines.

Captain Abdullai Mahmood, the chief executive officer of the Aero Contractors, said airlines are facing what he calls, a Mayday, a lingo meaning distress.

Mahmood said even though the airlines have been assured of being able to import aviation fuel, it is not easily achievable.

“A litre of aviation fuel as of today is N600 per litre in Lagos, in Abuja it is N650, in Kano it is N680 and in Maiduguri it is about N700 per litre and new prices started yesterday. That is what we are facing right now. It is a big monster.

He added that meetings between the airlines and the National Assembly and NNPC resulted in the government granting subvention or subsidy on aviation fuel. The subvention, he said, was to sell the fuel at N500 per litre, but for two weeks only.

“There was a promise that they could give the license but the process of importing the fuel to the airline is a long one. But we are in an emergency situation, this is a May Day call,  this is what airlines call May Day, and when somebody calls May Day, it’s a red flag, we are in a May Day situation right now, something has to be done really fast.

Mahmood added that foreign exchange (forex) and maintenance cost are part of the challenges facing the airlines.

“We have been crying that if something is not done, the airlines may not be able to continue”, adding that the travelling public would be the ones to bear the incidence of a price hike.

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