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NAMA threatens airlines, airports over N4 billion debt, issues 30-day ultimatum

Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) has issued a 30-day ultimatum to airlines, airports in the country to clear their N4 billion debt or risk sanctions. #NAMA

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NAMA threatens airlines, airports over N4 billion debt, issues 30-day ultimatum

The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) has issued a 30-day ultimatum to some airlines in Nigeria over N4 billion debt owed the agency.

While NAMA didn’t name the airlines indebted to it, the agency said the 30-day ultimatum notice issued to its debtors expires on February 28. It stated that the airlines had been informed of the details of the debt but no effort had been made to ensure payment.

The debtors are both state-owned and private airports, as well as airlines. They owe NAMA N4 billion but some of the debts have become bad debt as some airlines have gone out of business.

It said, “NAMA hereby notifies debtor private/state-owned airport operators and airlines that effective February 28, 2020, our services will no longer be available for the operation of their airports or airlines as the agency can no longer keep its personnel working at airports without payment.”

Meanwhile, debtors, who are skeptical about their debt level accrued from the services of NAMA, have been informed to communicate with the commercial department of NAMA in order to resolve the debt issue within the proposed timeframe.

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[READ MORE: FG targets $150 billion revenue from Zero-oil plan)

On the other hand, Air Peace has called on the Federal Government to prevent foreign carriers from operating domestic flights in the country. According to the Chief Operating Officer of Air Peace, Oluwatoyin Olajide, allowing foreign carriers to operate domestic flights would have serious negative implications on indigenous carriers in the country.

She added that the government needed to stop multiple destinations to foreign carriers.

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“Foreign carriers should not be allowed to conduct domestic operations within Nigeria. The government needs to stop multiple destinations to foreign carriers. This is suicidal and injurious to the survival of domestic operators in Nigeria,” she said.

Olalekan is a certified media practitioner from the Nigerian Institute of Journalism (NIJ). In the era of media convergence, Olalekan is a valuable asset, with ability to curate and broadcast news. His zeal to write was developed out of passion to shape people’s thought and opinion; serving as a guideline for their daily lives. Contact for tips: [email protected]

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Hospitality & Travel

COVID-19: Over 70% of jobs lost in aviation, tourism industries in 2020 – AfDB

The AfDB has stated that about 5 million jobs have been lost in the aviation and tourism industries in Africa due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Aviation in Africa

About 5 million out of Africa’s 7 million aviation and tourism industry-related jobs have been lost in 2020. Also, as much as $15 billion in revenue, half of this to African airlines.

This was disclosed by the African Development Bank (AfDB) in a statement issued and seen by Nairametrics on Friday.

Vice President for Infrastructure, Industrialization and Private Sector, AfDB, Solomon Quaynor explained that the pandemic’s effect was felt more in Africa, a claim that was backed up by numerous panelists at the just concluded AfDB’s webinar themed ‘African Aviation Recovery Conference: coordinating an efficient response to the COVID-19 crisis’s effects on the Aviation sector in Africa.’

He said, “The air transport system is really at the forefront of all our collective objectives to realize Africa as a single economic bloc. The centrality of the aviation sector to Africa’s long-term goals by referencing three flagship projects of the AU’s Agenda 2063 that aim to advance open skies and closer connectivity: SAATM, The African Continental Free Trade Area, and the African Passport-Free movement of people.

“The air transport system is really at the forefront of all our collective objectives to realize Africa as a single economic bloc of 1.3 billion people with a GDP of almost 3 trillion dollars, for which we want to begin to really focus and increase trade among ourselves, as well as investment.”

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Also at the event, Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika called on African governments to embrace full liberalisation of the aviation sector, invoking the Yamoussoukro Decision, which established an arrangement for the gradual liberalization of intra-Africa air transport services.

He said, “Nigeria today has all its bilateral air service agreements with the YD and was also among the first ten countries that signed a commitment to implement the Single African Air Transport Market.”

Dr. Amani Abou Zeid, African Union Commission for Infrastructure and Energy, explained that Africa’s aviation industry represents a huge market that the continent’s airlines need to exploit more fully, with technology and AI offering the way forward for expansion, regional development experts.

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“Technology and smart technologies are offering this fantastic opportunity, so let’s make use of AI, let’s make use of the Internet of Things, let’s capacitate our people to revamp and to rethink our industry, to make sure that both our airports and our airlines cater for the very near future,” said Zeid.

What they are saying

A key takeaway was the urgent need for coordinated action among the sector’s actors, including governments, aviation authorities and multilateral stakeholders such as the Bank.

“The time is now. All of us who have really been working on upstream issues such as SAATM, the World Bank, ourselves, the AU and others, now is the time to really pool our advocacy and resources to make this happen once and for all because if we continue to operate as a federation of 54 states as opposed to an integrated market, our economies will continue to be sub-optimal,” said Quaynor

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Energy

Autogas: Nigerians will not pay N250,000 for conversion, it is free – FG

The FG has clarified an earlier statement about Nigerians having to pay N250,000 to have their vehicles converted from diesel/fuel use to autogas.

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FG says vehicle owners to pay N250,000 to convert from petrol to autogas

The Federal Government has said that news reports of Nigerians having to pay N250,000 to convert their cars from diesel/petrol engines to gas is false and incorrect.

This was disclosed by Justice Derefaka, the Technical Adviser on Gas Business and Policy Implementation to Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva, to newsmen on Friday.

On Friday, Derefaka clarified his position as wrong and said the FG plans make the conversion for free. He added that the FG plans to convert 1 million vehicles for free by the end of 2021.

“I granted an interview on Channels Television, where I stated the auto conversion of vehicles to gas will amount to N250k and Nigerians will need to pay for that. That statement is not correct, it is wrong.

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“On that note, I will like to state the position that has been made by my boss, Timipre Sylva, that FG will convert those vehicles for free for Nigerians, and we are looking at 1 million vehicles by the end of 2021,” he said.

What you should know 

  • Nairametrics reported earlier this week that  Justice Derefaka had said vehicle owners in the country would have to pay N250,000 to have their cars converted to autogas from petrol.

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Coronavirus

COVID-19: Moderna says it will produce 500 million vaccines by 2021

Moderna Inc, has said that the company has the capacity to produce up to 500 million coronavirus vaccines by 2021.

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Moderna COVID-19 vaccine passes safety test on animals

Stéphane Bancel, CEO of pharmaceutical company and Covid-19 vaccine maker, Moderna Inc, has said that the company has the capacity to produce up to 500 million coronavirus vaccines by 2021.

The CEO disclosed this at the Nasdaq Investor Conference, as reported by Reuters.

What you should know 

  • Nairametrics reported last month that the pharmaceutical company had stated that its Covid-19 vaccine was 94.5% effective in treating coronavirus, after preliminary analysis of a large late-stage clinical trial.
  • UK Health Secretary, Matt Hancock announced in November that the UK had secured 5 million doses of the vaccine.

The company disclosed that they had applied for emergency use of the vaccine in the United States and EU after finalizing clinical trials which showed 94.1% efficacy, and would hold a December 17 meeting with the American Food and Drug Administration to discuss emergency use.

For 500 million, I am very comfortable we are gonna get there (2021),” Bancel said at the Nasdaq Investor Conference.

The CEO added that the price for its vaccine would remain at $37 per dose, but expected it to fall to $25 as purchase volumes rose.

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Moderna says up to 125 million doses of its Covid-19 vaccine will be supplied globally by the first quarter of 2021.

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