Air Peace has described the special foreign exchange (forex) procurement window granted airlines and manufacturers by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) at the weekend as a great relief to the aviation industry.
In a statement signed by its Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Chief Allen Onyema, Air Peace commended President Muhammadu Buhari, the Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika and CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele for heeding the calls of the airlines to intervene in the foreign exchange situation.
The development, the airline said, was an assurance that the Federal Government was willing to permanently address the other issues affecting the aviation industry such as high cost of aviation fuel, multiple taxation, among other operational challenges of airlines in the country.
“We welcome the news of the intervention of the Federal Government in the foreign exchange crisis confronting airlines in the country with a heart of gratitude. We had on different occasions appealed to the Federal Government to save airlines in the country from collapsing. The operations of airlines in the country are largely dependent on the availability of the scarce foreign exchange, a situation which has threatened the existence of the airlines.
“The intervention of the Federal Government in the crisis through the CBN is, therefore, a great relief. The tireless efforts of the Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, to this end and his unrelenting efforts to ensure a smooth operating environment for airlines are highly commendable.
“The intervention, we believe, is a reassuring sign that other challenges confronting the indigenous airlines such as difficulty in sourcing aviation fuel, the issue of multiple taxation and, most worrisome, the issue of multiple designation into Nigerian cities granted to foreign airlines will soon be decisively addressed.
“On our part, we are always ready and willing to support and cooperate with the Federal Government in its efforts to tackle the current economic recession and ensure a strong economy,” Air Peace said.