By Chinelo Obogo, Lagos
The Federal Government’s Public-Private Partnership (PPP) deal that will see the establishment of an aviation leasing company and Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility has reached its final stage as the Full Business Case (FBC) will on Tuesday, January 25, be presented to the Project Delivery Team (PDT) for deliberation in Abuja, Daily Sun can confirm.
Barring any unforeseen circumstance, the FBC, which will provide all the information needed to support the government’s decision to move ahead with the PPP will be presented to the PDT and after deliberations, the document will be sent to the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) for certification and afterwards, to the Federal Executive Council (FEC) for approval.
The mandate of the PDT is to drive the PPP process from inception to conclusions and to monitor its implementation in line with ICRC guidelines. The establishment of an MRO and leasing company is part of the aviation roadmap set out by the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika.
A reliable industry source confirmed to Daily Sun that all the major steps required to complete the deal have been carried out by the PDT and that in two years, the industry will have a world-class MRO, which will be of huge benefit not just to Nigeria but to other African countries.
‘The first step to carry out this type of project is to advertise for bidders, which was done. When the bidders indicated interest, they all made their submissions and the preferred bidder was selected. The government drafted the contract which was sent to the preferred bidder to go through, make any corrections and submit back, then the government would prepare the Full Business Case which would be sent to the ICRC for certification. After that, it would be submitted to FEC and if it is approved, the project would start. The stage in which the PPP is now is that the contract draft has been done, it has been sent to the preferred bidder, and they acknowledged, made their own input and returned it. The meeting which will be held tomorrow is to go through what the preferred bidder sent back to the PDT. It is going to be Build, Operate and Transfer. They build, operate for some years and transfer ownership back to the government.
‘The PDT did its due diligence by visiting the preferred bidder’s headquarters in the UK where they say they have their facility and the team was very satisfied with what they saw there. After the agreement is approved, the bidder has two years to commence and complete the project. So, we can say that the agreement has reached the final stages,’ the source said.
Sirika had earlier said that the establishment of an MRO and leasing company would curtail capital flight, ease the leasing process for domestic airlines, encourage foreign investment, enhance technology transfer to Nigerians, improve aircraft maintenance turnaround time and generally develop the aviation sector. He said the MRO would be sited at the Abuja airport and is meant to cater to the West and Central African market and will also service the proposed national carrier. It would have the capacity to service narrow and wide-body aircraft and the government would support this venture by establishing a free zone at the airports.
The Consortium of A J Walters Leasing Limited and Glovesly Pro-Project Limited was announced last year as the preferred bidder to establish the leasing company; while the Consortium of A J Walters Aviation Limited, EgyptAir Maintenance & Engineering (EGME) and Glovesly Pro-Project Limited as the preferred bidder to establish the MRO.