BreakingNews 31/7/16: Nigeria pledges support to foreign airlines

[ Masterweb Reports ] - The Minister of State for Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, says the Federal Government will improve the economic and operational viability of the nation’s international airports to encourage the international airlines.


This is contained in a statement by Mr James Odaudu, Deputy Director, Press and Public Affairs, Office of the Minister of State, Aviation, Ministry of Transportation, in Abuja on Sunday.


Sirika made the promises while receiving the Turkish Ambassador to Nigeria, Hakan Cakil in his office.


He promised that government would give consideration to requests by serious foreign airlines for increased flight frequencies as long as the nation’s interests were not compromised.


According to him, the nation’s relationship with foreign airlines will be based strictly on the Bilateral Air Services Agreements with the Airline’s home governments.


He informed the ambassador of government’s determination to revamp the aviation sector through the concessioning of its airports, beginning with "the big four" in Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Port Harcourt. 


``The concession, he said, was to address issues of infrastructure, and ensure world class maintenance.


He commended the cordial relationship that exists between Nigeria and Turkey, and condemned the recent coup attempt in Turkey, describing it as undesirable and anti-development.


The Turkish Ambassador told the minister that he was in the ministry to express his country’s gratitude for the excellent relationship between the two countries in aviation sector.


Cakil on behalf Turkish Airlines requested for more frequencies in airline’s operations in Nigeria considering its population and air traffic volume.


He also commended the Nigerian government for the show of support for his country during its trying periods, especially the recent attempt by subversive elements to derail the course of democratic governance.


In another development, the has promised to do whatever it takes to make domestic airlines more competitive with their foreign counterparts in the airlift of Nigerian Christian pilgrims.


Sirika made the promise when he reacted to a request by the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission, Dr Tor Uja, during a courtesy visit. 


He said "the primary purpose of the ministry is to promote the development of the sector and supporting local airlines to operate in the best possible environment."


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