The Airlines Operators of Nigeria (AON) has raised fears that some airlines may soon shut down operations in the country due to the continuous hike in aviation fuel.
Allen Onyema, the Vice-President of AON, confirmed that the fuel price has now hit an all-time high of N714 per litre.
Though the three airlines were not mentioned but in his presentation at Wednesday’s Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) National Aviation Conference (FNAC) in Abuja, Onyema said while the aviation fuel crisis is not limited to Nigeria, it was made worse by the naira to dollar exchange.
To address the challenge, the Federal Government had approved 10,000 metric tonnes of aviation fuel to the airlines but the carriers were yet to access it, according to Onyema.
He disclosed that 16 months ago, the price of aviation fuel was about N200 per litre but has risen to over N700 per litre today in the local market.
He said: “That is why we ran to the government and the Federal Government has given us about 10,000 metric tonnes of fuel at the cost of N580 per litre in Lagos and about N607 per litre outside Lagos.
“This is not the only issue. Since the COVID-19 crisis, most airlines all over the world, including Nigeria have not recovered from COVID-19, except those whose countries have injected so much funds to assist them. This is nobody’s fault. It just happened. The government has tried its best by giving us this aviation fuel. This aviation fuel can take airlines out, not only in Nigeria but everywhere in the world.
“Some airlines outside Nigeria have closed down because of the effects of rising aviation fuel. If these things are not addressed in Nigeria, it can affect the bottom-line of all airlines in Nigeria.”