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HomeBusinessNigeria's stake in proposed national carrier stands at $12.5 mln

Nigeria’s stake in proposed national carrier stands at $12.5 mln

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The transactional adviser to the Federal Government has revealed that Nigeria’s 5 per cent shareholding in the proposed national carrier, Nigeria Air, is worth about $12.5 million.

Tilmann Gabriel, who served as the Transaction Adviser to the project, said in a report that the country’s investment in the proposed airline was $12.5 million and falls within the 5 percent alloted to the government while other private sector holders will hold the remaining 95 percent stake.

Global Financial Digest reported in September that Nigeria settled for the continent’s biggest carrier, Ethiopian Airlines as a technical partner and core investor for the proposed national carrier.

The minister of aviation, Hadi Sirika had earlier revealed that the had expended N651 million on transaction advisory services for the airline project.

Later report indicated that the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), which manages the country’s Sovereign wealth funds will own a 46 per cent stake in the proposed national carrier, Nigeria Air while Ethiopian Airlines, will control 49 per cent as a core investor and technical partner for the carrier.

However, with a turn of event in November, a Federal High Court Lagos Division granted an order of interim injunction restraining Nigeria Air Limited, Ethiopian Airlines, the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika and the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami from executing the proposed or draft “NATIONAL CARRIER ESTABLISHMENT AND AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OF NIGERIA and Ethiopian Airlines.

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The judge, Ambrose Lewis -Allagoa granted the order while ruling on an exparte application brought by the Registered Trustees Of The Airline Operators Of Nigeria (AON), Azman Air Services Ltd, Air Peace Nigeria Ltd, Max Air Ltd, United Nigeria Airlines Company Ltd and TopBrass Aviation Ltd all of whom are listed as plaintiffs in a suit they filed against the defendants.

The order restrained the defendants as represented by the Minister of Aviation and the AGF and the strategic equity partner, as represented by Ethiopian Airlines from giving effect to and or suspending the sale and transfer of the shared and operations of Nigeria Airlines and Ethiopian Airlines pending the determination of the motion on notice

But Gabriel insisted that the process leading to the formation of the airline had been transparent, unlike the claim by some stakeholders in the sector, especially the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON).

He noted that the government had ensured a clear ownership structure for the airline under the Public Private Partnership (PPP).

The Transaction Adviser insisted that with the total investment sum, the airline had a solid financial foundation.

According to him, Nigeria Air has the strategic direction, with a solid business plan for the next 10 years with a total start-up budget of $250 million.

He insisted that Nigeria Air was ready to launch with a fleet of Boeing 737 for domestic services, adding that the carrier was currently recruiting many Nigerian aviation professionals to help start the airline operation. He said:

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