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Airline operator warns against releasing aviation fund to individuals

10 January 2013, 09:02

Lagos - The Managing Director of Capital Airlines, Mr Amos Akpan, has advised the Federal Government not to involve individuals or private institutions in the procurement of the 30 new aircraft for domestic airline operations.

Akpan gave the advice in a paper entitled, ``Our Aviation Sector is Experiencing Very Lopsided Development``, which he delivered at an aviation stakeholders’ conference in Ikeja on Wednesday.

He also advised the Federal Ministry of Finance to gazette the Federal Government’s s zero tariff policy on new aircraft and spares importation meant to boost the services of domestic airlines.

Akpan said that the intervention procedure of acquiring new aircraft for domestic airlines was not clear and warned that there might be another wrong application of the government’s good intentions.

``On the zero tariffs on aircraft and spares, the waivers must be gazette to forestall a repeat of what happened when Chief Michael Ani was the Minister of Finance.

``With the gazette in place, the Federal Ministry of Finance would be able to pass the needed waiver directive to the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) for implementation on imported aircraft and spare parts, `` he said.

Akpan said that under the new arrangement, the insurance on new domestic aircraft must be paid by the title owner and retain the right of first loss payee.

``Similarly, payment on newly acquired domestic aircraft must be done on monthly basis from the sale of tickets to avoid default, `` he said.

Akpan said that aircraft acquisition was part of fleet expansion and upgrade usually based on specific airline needs.

He advised that the type of aircraft required by each operator and for what route should be taken into consideration by the government before acquisition.

 ``After the operational module of an airline has been identified, research into the availability of passengers and cargo identified, the frequency and capacity required must be determined.

``This would determine the size and type of aircraft to be procured from the intervention fund, `` he said. Akpan added that scheduled maintenance checks of such newly acquired aircraft must be financed by the owner when due.

He said payment of salaries, training, spare-parts and line maintenance must be on an open requisition programme to avoid default.

The airline boss also spoke on the aviation fuel that has skyrocketed to N200 per liter saying that fuel credit scheme should be established.

He advised that such payment should be automated between the banks and the fuel company on presentation of audited vouchers.


Tags aviation

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