Nigeria: Govt to Concession Airport Terminals, Targets 241,000 Jobs

The Federal Ministry of Aviation yesterday received four certificates of compliance or Outline Business Case (OBC) certificates on the concession of four international airports' terminals, bringing to seven the OBC certificates received by the ministry so far.

The ministry had previously received the OBC on the national carrier, the Aviation Leasing Company and the Maintenance Repairs Overhaul facility (MRO).

Presenting the certificates to the Aviation Minister, Sen. Hadi Sirika, the Director-General, Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Engr. Chidi Izuwah, said with the certificates, the ministry can go ahead to source for private investors for the terminals.

The airports that got the OBC include the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, Mallam Aminu International Airport, Kano, Port Harcourt International Airport and Murtala Muhammad International Airport, Lagos.

Izuwah said the OBCs showed that facilities were bankable and the private sector can invest in them. After the OBC, the next phase is the procurement stage and the Final Business Case (FBC), which will still be approved by the Federal Executive Council and the ICRC.

Commenting, Sen. Sirika said the airports concession programme was part of the Aviation Road Map previously approved by President Muhammadu Buhari, adding that when the process is completed, at least 241,700 direct jobs and thousands of indirect jobs will be created down the value chain.

"Critical to the roadmap are the airports' terminal concession. More than 80 percent of the roadmap is through public private partnership (PPP) and the ICRC has the sole mandate to regulate to ensure viability, fairness and diligence.

"You can't have nice airports and you don't have a feeder primary airline to feed it. If you have the airline, it means you must have a maintenance facility (MRO) and then you need the Aviation Leasing Company for ease of leasing aircraft and other critical equipment. All of these work together to create an aviation system that is self-sustaining", the minister added.

Sirika reiterated, however, that the airports would neither be privatised nor sold but only concessioned.

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