Director General of Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Captain Musa Nuhu, has said some of the issues with the implementation of the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM) is because one-third of the 34 nations that have signed the treaty do not meet the safety and security requirement.
Nuhu made this known at the Nigeria National Action Committee on the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) during an Implementation engagement series organised for the Aviation Industry where he pointed out some potential for Nigeria to thrive in the continent.
“One of the challenges I see in the implementation of SAATM and no one seems to talk about it is that we say 34 countries have signed SAATM’s solemn commitment and Memorandum of Occupation but one key fact we keep forgetting is that a third of those countries do not meet the eligibility requirement in safety and security to participate in SAATM.
“So effectively, we just have about two-third of those countries signed that can really participate in SAATM. This is one of the challenges the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC) which is the executing body of the SAATM is facing, and the regulatory bodies of the states that do not meet the security and safety requirement must handle as well,” Nuhu said.
On how Nigerians can tap into and benefit from the SAATM, Nuhu said with Africa’s 1.3 billion and a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of $2.6 trillion, it offers incredible potentials for continental aviation and with the implementation AfCFTA and SAATM.
“For Nigeria, being the dominant market in Western and Central Africa and a major market in the continent, has excellent opportunities and potentials and these have been largely ignored or not exploited over the years,” he said.