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Foreign Airlines May Exit Nigerian Market Due to $790 Million Trapped Revenue

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The International Air Transport Association  (IATA) has warned that foreign airlines may leave Nigeria over $790 million in ticket revenue currently stuck in the country.

IATA's Regional Vice President for Africa & Middle East, Kamil Alawadhi, told journalists in Geneva on Thursday that Nigeria is yet to take the necessary steps to address the issue.

He also disclosed that it was difficult for an airline to make a profit in Nigeria with a 25 percent interest rate on loans, exorbitant airport taxes, and insurance premiums six times higher than the global average.

He, however, stated that airlines based in Nigeria but operating outside the country experience lower operating costs and offer more competitive prices when compared to Nigeria.

Alawadhi criticized the unfair situation where airlines, having paid all dues, face challenges in retrieving their money due to bureaucratic delays.

Nigeria tops the list of countries with blocked airline funds, holding $792 million. Other countries include Egypt ($348 million), Algeria ($199 million), the AFI zone ($183 million), and Ethiopia ($128 million). 


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