From Uche Usim, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari acceded to the request of the Aviation Ministry by approving the designation of Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos; Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano; Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja; and Port Harcourt International Airport, Rivers as Special Economic Zones (SEZs).
With this development, these airports will enjoy the offerings of SEZs, including tax incentives and a window to pay lower tariffs on businesses.
The Minister of Aviation, Mr Hadi Sirika, made the disclosure on Thursday via a post on his verified Twitter account @hadisirika.
He tweeted: ‘I am very glad to announce that Mr President has approved our four International Airports as Special Economic Zones. These are Lagos, Kano, Abuja & Port Harcourt. Our roadmap working.’
The Nigerian civil aviation roadmap, as designed by the ministry, includes the establishment of a national carrier, establishment of a Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility, concession of some airports, the establishment of an Aviation Leasing Company, amongst others.
According to Sirika, the reforms contained in the aviation roadmap will lay a solid and lasting foundation for Aviation development in Nigeria.
The minister added that safety and security have remained at the centre of government policies in the aviation sector since the inception of the current administration and its efforts have been applauded by all, including the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC).
The minister has repeatedly appealed to all players within the industry to join hands with the government to ensure the realisation of the lofty objectives of the roadmap for the benefit of Nigerians and all users of the Nigerian airspace.