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FAAN denies borrowing $500m for aircraft acquisition

07 January 2013, 09:06

Abuja -  The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) has denied speculations that it borrowed 500 million US dollars about N78.5 billion from China to acquire aircrafts for domestic airlines operation.

This is contained in a statement signed by Mr Yakubu Dati, FAAN’s General Manager, Corporate Communications, in Lagos on Sunday. ``FAAN has not borrowed $500 million dollars from China nor any country for that matter.

Furthermore, FAAN is not acquiring aircrafts, as claimed. ``FAAN is a service provider in the industry and is presently occupied in translating the transformational aviation master plan into concrete realities,’’ Dati stated in the statement. Dati said that the authority was focused on the reconstruction of 22 airports across the country as initiated by the Minister of Aviation, Princess Stella Oduah.

He said that the Lagos terminal one, popularly known as GAT, had since been commissioned, adding that the remaining airports were at different stages of completion. The general manager said that the ministry was making arrangements to facilitate the acquisition of 30 airplanes to boost the operations of domestic airlines.

According to him, the modalities are being fine-tuned, to checkmate the abuse of the aviation intervention fund. ``This strategy will plug the loophole that allows fortune seekers free access to these funds. Other strategies are being deployed to grow the domestic airlines.’’

Dati noted that the ministry’s successful campaign for the removal of taxes and tariffs on commercial airline spare parts was being widely commended as a step in the right direction. He said that the ministry was making arrangement toward the construction of brand new airports in 2013.

``The year 2013 will witness the construction of brand new airport terminals in Abuja, Lagos, Kano and Port Harcourt and the commencement of the Aerotropolis project.

``A concept that involves building cities around airports and thus connecting businesses, suppliers, executives and goods to the aviation global world.’’ Dati, however, added that the transformation of the aviation sector was on course.


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