IATA welcomes FG release of foreign airlines trapped funds in Nigeria

The International Air Transport Association, IATA, has welcomed the Nigerian Government’s release of $265m of airlines’ blocked funds.  

In a statement by the Regional Vice President Africa and Middle East, Kamil Alawadhi, says they will continue to engage with it on expediting the release of the remaining amount, so that airlines can continue providing the connectivity Nigeria requires without disrupting and harming its economy and jobs.

He started that, even after this welcome and sizeable release, there will still be more than $200m of airlines funds blocked in Nigeria.   

Mr. Alawadhi encouraged other countries, in Africa and elsewhere, that are blocking the repatriation of foreign airlines’ funds, to follow Nigeria’s example and release the money they are withholding. 

According to him, without it, airlines cannot afford to serve those countries, adding that, this would be detrimental to the people and businesses that depend on the market connectivity those airlines provide.

“IATA speaks and leads the industry on matters of common interest. While IATA cannot speak for individual airlines, we hope the release of blocked funds with assurances and safeguards to prevent a recurrence, will persuade affected carriers to continue serving Nigeria.”

Other Africa countries listed by by IATA, that has continue to block airlines’ funds are Zimbabwe ($100m), Algeria ($96m), Eritrea ($79m) and Ethiopia ($75m).

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