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New York investors interested in Nigeria Aviation Industry

14 August 2012, 07:21

New York - Some prospective investors in New York City have expressed interest in investing in the Nigeria Aerotropolis Cities in the country and the aviation industry.

The North America Correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the investors spoke at the Nigeria Aviation Investment Road Show at the Nigeria House in New York on Monday.

They also said the aerotropolis would have great potential for investment, if properly handled.

They expressed optimism that if they invested in the remodelling of project of the sector, it could help in development of the entire aviation industry.

The investors also commended the Ministry of Aviation for organising the investment forum which they said had afforded them the opportunity of knowing what the government was doing in the industry.

Ms Funmi Oguniesi, Chief Operating Officer and Director of Public Sector Group (West Africa) of Citi Bank, said the company was interested in investing in the industry.

Oguniesi urged the government to provide the enabling environment to encourage prospective investors in aviation which, according to her, will enable the investors to understand the risks involved.

Bill Knapp, Director of Business Development, Capital company, identified the aviation sector as huge potential for investors.

Dr Harold Demuren, the Director-General, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), urged the investors to invest in aircraft maintenance facilities.

"You can have the best airports but without adequate safety, it is zero. Aviation has become the engine for economic growth," the NCAA D-G stressed.

He reiterated government commitment to attract investors into the industry, adding that there were a lot of opportunities in airlines business in the country.
Demuren also said that 50 per cent revenue of Ethiopian airline was generated from tickets sold in Nigeria.

In his contribution, Mr George Uriesi, the Managing Director, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), noted that the nation’s airports needed to be remodelled.

"The airport experience is negative. It is unacceptable the way the airports are. This gave birth to the remodelling of the airports." 

Uriesi said that four new model airport terminals would be constructed in the country.

The Murtala Muhammed International Airport is a terrible airport. I am ashamed of it. We are going to change the way we manage the airports."

Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Aviation, Ms Anne Ene-Ita, who represented the Minister, Princess Stella Oduah, identified the aviation sector as critical such that its transformation was "very fast".

According to her, this is the reason for the Nigeria Aviation investment Road Show.

Ene-Ita said the aviation sector was facing a lot of challenges that needed immediate attention.


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