Farnborough 2018: Nigeria unveils plans for new national carrier

Farnborough 2018: Nigeria unveils plans for new national carrier

The government of Nigeria has revealed the branding and livery for a new national flag-carrier, Nigeria Air, at the Farnborough Airshow.

The development comes nearly 15 years after the previous state-run airline, Nigerian Airways, ceased operations and was greeted with some scepticism.

Nigeria minister of state for aviation, Hadi Sirika, said: “I am very pleased to tell you that we are finally on track to launching a new national flag carrier for our country: Nigeria Air.

“We are all fully committed to fulfilling the campaign promise made by our president, Muhammadu Buhari, in 2015.

“We are aiming to launch Nigeria Air by the end of this year.”

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The branding and naming of the new national carrier follows a social media campaign undertaken by the ministry of aviation which invited Nigerian youth and students for their input and creativity to come up with a name for the new Nigerian flag carrier.

Sirika continued: “I want to personally thank our transaction advisers, led by AMG, and the special task force, who have worked diligently to achieve the results so far and overcome the challenges involved.

“We obtained the certificate of compliance from the Nigerian Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission two weeks ago and can now go into the investor search.

“I am confident that we will have a well-run national flag carrier, a global player, compliant to international safety standards, one which has the customer at its heart.

“An airline that communicates the essence of our beautiful country, an airline we can all be proud of.”

The airline is likely to be primarily owned and managed by a group of a yet unidentified private investors.

“The Nigerian government will not own more than five per cent of the new national carrier,” added Sirika.

“The government will not be involved in running it or deciding who runs it.”

The minister concluded: “Following extensive market research, the branding of our new airline, Nigeria Air, demonstrates a true flag carrier of our nation, soaring through the skies in the shape of our nation’s eagle.”