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UAE begins conditional issuance of visa to Nigerians on October 8

Nigeria’s Aviation Minister has confirmed UAE’s resumption of visa issuance to Nigerians.

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uae, Hadi Sirika, Minister of Aviation lists

The Federal Government of Nigeria has confirmed that the United Arab Emirates (UAE), will resume the issuance of visas to intending travellers from Thursday, October 8, 2020.

This confirmation was made by the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, through a tweet, on Tuesday, October 6, 2020, via his official twitter handle.

The minister revealed that intending applicants are expected to have a return ticket, hotel booking, negative PCR result, and health insurance that is similar to that being required for Schengen visa.

READ: Facebook deletes multiple accounts in Nigeria, others 

“UAE confirmed that they will begin issuance of Visas from 8th of October, 2020. Travellers to have a return ticket, hotel booking, negative PCR result, and Health insurance (similar to Schengen requirement). Health insurance can be paid through travel agents/airline,” Sirika tweeted.

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Nairametrics had earlier reported that the United Arab Emirates had written the Nigerian government to inform it that it has agreed to issue visas to Nigerians after the initial suspension. This prompted the Federal Government to lift the ban earlier placed on Emirates Airline from flying in and out of Nigeria.

READ: Avoiding 2016: What Nigeria should do to fight the coming economic storm

However, the Aviation Minister in his earlier statement, noted that the resumption of flight operations by the Emirates Airline in Nigeria depends on the commencement of visa issuance by the UAE to Nigerians.

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It can be recalled that the UAE in an earlier statement while acknowledging suspension of visa services to Nigerians, said travels between Nigeria and UAE were temporarily limited due to the closure of the Nigerian airspace, as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and also precautionary measure on their part to combat the spread of the virus.

READ: Travellers to United Arab Emirates must have return ticket, negative COVID-19 test results- FG

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Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Benjamin nice

    October 8, 2020 at 10:44 pm

    It is said that UAE, are still working hard to welcome every country to they domain,to ensure the benefit of everyone in the country.the only languages UAE understand in they domain is love and peace. Let those coming to UAE, especially the youths, those seeking for job should understand the same language of peace and love, to enable them, secure what they want.
    UAE is ready to welcome Nigeria again.
    God bless United Arab Emirates.
    God bless United States.

  2. Charles chinedu

    October 9, 2020 at 1:12 am

    this is a good news..am charles from delta state am living and working in UAE..this is a welcoming news us .God Bless Nigeria and Nigerians and God Bless UAE.

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Hospitality & Travel

#EndSARS: NCAA denies alleged shut down of airspace, as Turkish Airlines takes off tonight

FAAN has reportedly shut down the air space of the nation due to alleged unrest in the country.

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Murtala Muhammed Airport (MMA), FAAN recruitment, FAAN in recruitment scandal as politicians takeover, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, 2019: Lagos airport records growth in passenger, aircraft and cargo movement  

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has denied the alledged shut of the nation’s airspace due to the unrest, arising from the hijacked #EndSARS protests in Lagos, Abuja, and some other states in the country.

Though, the authority has not issued an official statement on the development, a source in the apex regulatory body told Nairametrics that the airspace remains open in Lagos and Abuja.

He said, “It is not true that the airspace is shut as rumoured on some social media platforms. Turkish Airline is attending to its passengers at the moment and the flight is tonight. So, where is the airspace being shut coming from.

“Delta Airline decided to divert the Lagos bound flight to Dakar, Senegal before going back to New York not because our airspace is shut but its Lagos office informed the Pilot that there is curfew in Lagos. Expectedly, American airlines are so sensitive to issues like that.”

Back story: A Twitter user, Osasu Onayiuwana, whose friend is one of Delta Air passengers en-route Lagos from Atlanta, USA, had alleged that Delta Airline returned ti New York because Nigerian air space was shut.

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He tweeted, “A friend returning to Lagos, from Atlanta on @Delta has been informed, during their Dakar, Senegal stopover, that @Nigeria’s airspace has been closed. They are now flying back to Atlanta!

“Actually, his plane is currently on the way to New York, from Dakar. Before this, some passengers asked @Delta to allow them to find their way to Lagos from Dakar. Understandably, the airline refused.”

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Hospitality & Travel

Nigeria set to lose on latest Bilateral Air Service Agreements

Experts have explained why Nigeria is at the losing end of yet another Bilateral Air Space Agreement.

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Nigeria set to lose on latest Bilateral Air Service Agreements, United States announces changes to work permit visas that could affect Nigerians

It is no longer news that Nigeria signed Bilateral Air Service Agreements (BASA) with the United States, India, Morocco and Rwanda. However, who benefits more from the agreements has been a topical discussion amongst Nigerian stakeholders. Some of them, who spoke with Nairametrics in separate interviews, argued that the development would favour the partner countries more than Nigeria.

They argued that Nigeria has signed this deal with over 80 countries across the world, but has turned out to be disadvantageous to Nigeria. Most of the agreements are only beneficial to the countries and their foreign carriers, without any reciprocal benefits to Nigeria. This is allegedly due to the failure of the Nigerian representatives to put Nigeria’s interest first at the BASA negotiating table.

READ: CBN to sanction exporters who default on export proceed number

In most cases, Nigeria does not really benefit from the deal, especially with no National carrier or a domestic airline that has the required equipment to compete with their foreign counterparts.

Managing Director, Starburst Aviation Limited, Capt. David Olubadewo, who was once Nigeria’s youngest pilot, admitted that he has not seen the agreements. However, he told Nairametrics that the nation does not have the capacity/equipment to compete favourably with the countries it signed the deal with.

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READ: FG to inject over N198 billion on capital projects in power sector in 2021

Capt. Olubadewo said, “In most cases, BASA entails specific agreement between two partners, where parties involved will agree on exchange of flights. It could be 10 flights weekly from Country A and same from the other Country.

“So, if US for instance, has done 10 flights to Nigeria as agreed and Nigeria has not, it will not affect US in anyway.”

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In his own case, Muyiwa Lucas, another stakeholder in the industry, claimed that the aim of the international carriers and their countries is to make sure that indigenous carriers do not rise to compete with them on those lucrative routes like Lagos-London, Abuja-London, Lagos-Dubai, Lagos-Paris, Lagos-Amsterdam, and Lagos-Johannesburg.

READ: Nigeria, India to conclude Bilateral Air Services Agreement deal

In an interview with Nairametrics, he said that the partners are always quick to choose a favourable destination in Nigeria (Lagos and Abuja), while they dictate to Nigeria the airport to land its aircrafts in their countries.

Lucas said, “Nigerian flights are only allowed to drop passengers at Gatwick, which handled 46.1 million passengers in 2018. They don’t allow such in Heathrow airport, which is London’s main hub and also one of the world’s busiest airports with 80.1 million passengers in 2018.

“Arik Air was stopped from operating from Abuja to London, unless it paid for slot allocation, which cost a huge amount of money.

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READ: Nigeria, Ethiopia sign visa waiver agreement

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“But, while British Airways was and is still flying to Abuja, enjoying grandfather rights; Arik Air was paying for slots and when the Nigerian airline deemed that operation unprofitable, it stopped, leaving only British Airways to be operating to Abuja from London with minimum load factor of 85%.”

Lucas argued that while some of the countries introduced clauses to jeopardise Nigerian airlines operation to their countries, Nigeria rarely retaliated in the spirit of diplomatic principle of reciprocity.

READ: Just in: FG bars Air France, KLM and other foreign airlines

However, Pranjal Pande, an Indian Aviation Expert, sees the development from a different angle.

According to him, Nigeria is home to a substantial Indian expatriate population, and India sees thousands of yearly visitors from Nigeria but noted that the lack of direct flights has meant passengers fly mostly with Middle East carriers.

Pande said, “Popular routes from Delhi and Mumbai to Lagos are over 4,100 nautical miles, putting them out of the range of the current generation of narrowbody aircraft. This means that, from India, only Vistara and Air India, the only airlines with widebodies, could start flights to Nigeria. Neither airline has signalled intentions of doing so soon.

READ: Nigeria @ 60: The Aviation sector and its travails

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“It’s most likely that Air Peace will be the first to start flights to India. However, the timing remains up in the air due to the current crisis.”

Backstory: On October 6, 2020, Nairametrics reported that the Federal Government announced the signing of Bilateral Air Service Agreements (BASA) with the United States, India, Morocco and Rwanda.

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A copy of the agreement showed that it was signed in Abuja by President Muhammadu Buhari on September 30, 2020.

The disclosure was made by the Minister for Aviation, Hadi Sirika, through a tweet on his official Twitter handle on Tuesday, October 6, 2020.

What they are saying

The Minister said, “The agreement is the instruments of ratification of the bilateral air service agreement between Nigeria and USA, India, Morocco, as well as Rwanda.”

He added that Nigeria will take advantage of the agreement to strengthen economic, social and cultural ties with the US.

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Hospitality & Travel

Transport fare for motorcycle “Okada” more than doubled in 2020

Data from the NBS reveals the average fare paid by commuters for a journey by motorcycle more than doubled year on year.

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Transport fare for motorcycle "Okada" more than doubled in 2020, Lagos State bans Gokada, ORide, MaxNG, others from 15 local governments 

Data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) reveals the average fare paid by commuters for a journey by motorcycle per drop more than doubled year on year (September 2020 vs 2019 respectively).

This was contained in the recently released data on Transport fare for September 2020 in Nigeria. This covers bus journey within the city per drop, bus journey intercity, state route, charge per person, airfare charge for specified routes single journey, journey by motorcycle (Okada) per drop, and waterway passenger transport.

READ: Nigeria’s manufacturing sector contracts for 5th consecutive month – CBN 

Motorcycle Fares

  • According to the report, the average fare paid by commuters for the journey by motorcycle per drop increased by 10.47% MOM and by 111.11% YOY to N255.51 in September 2020 from N231.29 in August 2020.
  • The states with the highest journey fare by motorcycle per drop were Niger (N1,467.49), Kogi (N362.47), and Rivers (N345.80); while states with the lowest journey fare by motorcycle per drop were Adamawa (N76.55), Katsina (N100.84), and Kebbi (N125.60).
  • Similarly, the average fare paid by commuters for bus journeys within the city increased by 7.92% MOM and by 63.88% YOY to N309.73 in September 2020 from N286.99 in August 2020.

READ: These 3 states are the most expensive to travel from in Nigeria

READ: NBS discloses States with highest bus fares in Nigeria (Full List)

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Bus Fares

The states with the highest bus journey fare within the city were Zamfara (N579.84), Bauchi (N492.14), and Cross River (N416.32); while states with the lowest bus journey fare within the city were Abia (N188.50), Kebbi (N192.48), and Borno (N200.80).

  • The average fare paid by commuters for bus journey intercity increased by 0.36% MOM and by 24.30% YOY to N2,022.70 in September 2020 from N2,015.50 in August 2020.
  • The states with the highest bus journey fare intercity were Abuja FCT (N4,315.22), Lagos (N3,073.25), and Sokoto (N3,000.00); while states with the lowest bus journey fare within the city were Kwara (N223.45), Benue (N274.64), and Ondo (N291.07).

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Air Travel

Average fare paid by air passengers for specified routes single journey decreased by -4.59% MOM and increased by 20.60% YOY to N36,884.59 in September 2020 from N38,659.86 in August 2020.

  • The states with the highest airfare were Lagos (N39,750.00), Rivers (N39,520.00), and Anambra (N38,950.00); while states with the lowest airfare were Akwa Ibom (N32,500.00), Sokoto (N33,700.00), and Benue (N35,000.00).
  • The average fare paid by passengers for waterway passenger transport increased by 7.06% MOM and by 34.13% YOY to N734.26 in September 2020 from N685.82 in August 2020.
  • The states with the highest fare by waterway passenger transport were Bayelsa (N2,250.23), Rivers (N2,200.64), and Delta (N2,150.30); while states with the lowest fare by waterway passenger transport were Borno (N200.48), Gombe (N264.29), and Abuja FCT (N294.10).

READ: Nigeria’s inflation rate hits 13.71% as food prices soar

What this means: According to the NBS, transportation makes up 6.4% of consumption expenditure of millions of naira next only to food at over 50%. Transport is also a key input cost for determining food prices and conducting business in the country contributing to the inflation rate. A combination of bad roads. poor infrastructure, exchange rate devaluation, removal of fuel subsidies, and a general rise in prices of goods and services have impacted transportation costs across the country.

 

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