The United Arab Emirates (UAE) government has approved Nigeria’s carrier, Air Peace Airline, to operate a direct flight in and out of Dubai.
This was made known by the Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Festus Keyamo, on Sunday at the end of the 2023 Dubai Airshow in the UAE, where he also visited the pavilions of leading aviation and aerospace industries to inspect technologies that could be of use in driving his Five Point Agenda for the aviation industry in Nigeria.
Emirates to resume operations soon
Keyamo also revealed that Emirates Airlines, which stopped operations in the country due to its inability to repatriate dollars earned in the country home, also announced its readiness to commence direct flights to Nigeria.
According to a statement by the Head of Press and Public Affairs in the Federal Ministry of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Odutayo Oluseyi, the declaration was made by Keyamo after meeting with the airline officials at the just-concluded Dubai Airshow in the United Arab Emirates.
The statement from Oluseyi partly said,
- “Using the opportunity of the Airshow, the Honourable Minister on the sidelines met with officials of Emirates Airline to further discuss the resumption of flights by the Airline to Nigeria which has yielded positive results as the management has given assurance that the resumption of the flight would commence very soon.’’
Oluseyi noted in the statement that the minister also met with the management of the Airline Executive, led by its CEO, Dana Hatcic, a company that indicated interest in establishing an MRO facility in Nigeria.
He said the minister expressed the possibility of a maiden edition of the Nigeria Air Show sometime in November 2024, adding that Nigeria will be the first African country to organize such an event.
Keyamo also visited the pavilions of leading aviation and aerospace industries in the world to inspect modern technologies that could be of use in driving his 5- 5-Point agenda for the aviation industry in Nigeria, particularly the improvement of infrastructure and promotion of innovation and creativity in cutting-edge technologies relating to civil aviation.
The Dubai Airshow commenced on 13 November and concluded on 17 November. The event attracted a considerable number of participants from around the world, including leading aviation and aerospace industry specialists.
What you should know
Recall that in November 2022, Emirates announced the suspension of flights to Nigeria. It said the measure started on October 29 2022 and blamed it on its inability to repatriate its revenue from the country.
The airline management said,
- “Under these extraordinary circumstances, Emirates had no option but to suspend flights to/from Nigeria from 29 October 2022 to mitigate against further losses moving forward.’’
Emirates lamented that it has not repatriated its blocked funds from the country amidst the lingering scarcity of forex in the country.
- “Without the timely repatriation of the funds and a mechanism in place to ensure that future repatriation of Emirates’ funds does not accumulate in any way, the backlog will continue to grow, and we simply cannot meet our operational costs nor maintain the commercial viability of our operations in Nigeria.’’