The chairman, United Nigeria Airlines, Prof. Obiora Okonkwo, has called for a special fund for the airlines to be drawn at single digit interest rate.
He said the Nigerian indigenous airline operators are greatly challenged thus the federal government should make deliberate effort to save the industry from collapse.
Prof. Okonkwo spoke on Thursday in Abuja at the airline’s 2023 management retreat with the theme ‘Positioning United Nigeria for Value Creation and Retention’.
He listed the dominant challenges plaguing airlines to include the exorbitant cost of aviation fuel, scarcity of aviation fuel, difficulty in accessing forex at the Central Bank of Nigeria official rate and high cost of commercial loans.
The United Nigeria chairman said flying is no longer elitist thus government needed to accord it special attention as it had done with road transportation, agriculture and other sectors.
He clarified that operators were not demanding bailouts nor subsidies but low-interest funds to draw from and capitalise on their operations.