Lagos, Abuja, two other airports approved, National airliner to begin operation in 2022
The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika has disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari has approved four international airports in Nigeria as Special Economic Zones.
Sirika disclosed this on Thursday via a tweet on his official twitter account.
The approved airports are Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos; Port Harcourt International Airport, Rivers; Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano and Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.
The Tweet reads: “I am very glad to announce that Mr. President has Approved our four International Airports as Special Economic Zones. These are Lagos, Kano, Abuja & Port Harcourt. Our roadmap working,”
Meanwhile, the aviation minister on Wednesday said the National airliner will commence operations in the first quarter of 2022.
Sirika said this while fielding questions from State House correspondents after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo in the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He said: “In this 2021, we will try to do all the needful and probably we intend to start operations somewhere around first quarter 2022.
“It is still in top gear, we are coming back to Council, hopefully within the next two weeks, to present the memo on the national carrier.
“We went to Council to approve the outline business case for the carrier and then the Council raised some questions and asked us to go and file the memo again and bring it back.
“So, once it comes back and the outline business case is approved by Council, then, of course, we will now go to the full business case, which is now going to the market and then establishing the national carrier.
“It was our intention to have a national carrier running in 2021, which is this year. Unfortunately due to COVID, which took the greater part of last year, since March last year, activities are almost impossible.
“Of course, for obvious reasons, we now have access to equipment, that they will come faster to us, deliveries of the aircraft will be faster, perhaps even the rates might be cheaper and so on, and so forth.