• Again, Naira falls all-time low on Thursday against US dollars, other major currencies, new rate outrageous!

    22/Sep/2016 // 1605 Viewers


    PARIS, SEPTEMBER 22, 2016: (DGW) THE Naira, Nigeria's domestic currency has fallen again to an all-time low  against the United States dollars and other world's major currencies.

    However, it exchanged for N436 to the US dollar at the parallel market on Thursday as the scarcity of the US dollar hits the foreign exchange market.

    The British pound, and the European flagship currency, euro, exchanged for N555 and N472 respectively, at the parallel market.

    Similarly, Nigeria's foreign exchange reserve recorded a new 11-year low of $24.76 billion on Wednesday, the lowest since June 2005.

    However, the inter-bank market was comparatively stable. The naira exchanged for N305.5 to the dollar, while the British and European currencies went for N399 and N343 respectively.

    Reacting, Nigeria's Apex Bank boss Godwin Emefiele, dismissed complaints saying  the parallel market rate could not be used to evaluate the true value of the local currency.

    His words: “It is unfair to use the shallow market as a basis for determining the value of our currency. No one uses the Travelex rate at Heathrow to determine the exchange rate for the pound in the United Kingdom,” Emefiele said.

    “So it is unfair to use that to determine the value of our currency. Those who are dealing in the market are doing so illegally. We should not be encouraging the tendencies of those people who are involved in capital flight, or those who want to conduct foreign exchange business without providing necessary documentation.”

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  • APC, Buhari silent as PDP finally breaks silence, releases astonishing facts and figures of economy he inherited

    23/Aug/2016 // 9821 Viewers


    The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has said that it handed a better Nigeria to President Muhammadu Buhari after he won the 2015 general elections.

    The party also insisted that all the gains it recorded while in charge of the governance of the country, have all been reversed by the All Progressives Congress-led, APC, administration.

    However, President Buhari is yet to comment on the allegations against his government.
    The PDP stated this on Saturday, August 20, while responding to a statement credited to the National Chairman of the APC, John Oyegun, that the PDP lacked the moral right to comment on the current state of the Nigerian economy, insisting that the party brought the current economic crisis upon the nation.

    Earlier, Oyegun had accused the PDP-led administration of former President, Goodluck Jonathan, of not being able to account for N33 trillion it received as revenue.

    Reacting, PDP in a statement said: “We read the statement by Chief John Oyegun, Chairman of APC, to the effect that PDP has no right to speak about President Buhari’s economic failures, and felt compelled to respond for record purposes.

    “First of all, Section 39 CFRN guarantees all Nigerians the right to freedom of expression. Chief Oyegun and his party would do well to stop its many attempts at violating this right.

    “Secondly, we will not follow Chief Oyegun’s path by responding with an invective rejoinder.

    “However, as lawyers say, we will let the facts speak for themselves. For the avoidance of doubt, these are some of the economic indices inherited by the Buhari administration:

    “a. No 1 destination for Foreign Investment in Nigeria with $395m in investments in Q1 2015 alone.

    “b. Inflation at single digit interest rates for several years. It was 9.6% at the inception of the Buhari administration.

    “c. A GDP that had grown at an average of 8% p/a in the last 10 years. Nigeria is currently experiencing its first negative GDP growth since the return of Democracy in 1999.

    “d. A telecoms sector that has received more than $32b in investment since 2001.

    “e. The largest economy in African valued at over $500b.

    “f. An economy that was managing successfully dealing with its unemployment challenges

    “g. An economy that had successfully increased per capita income from $299.4 in 1999 to $2640 in 2015.

    “h. A stock market valued at N11.66t. The Nigerian Stock market has lost more than N1.3t of its value since the inception of the Buhari admin.

    “i. An economy that had reduced its food import bill from well over N1t to N684.7 billion as at December 2013 & and was on target to meet its target of producing 20million MT of food annually.

    “j. An economy that was diversifying by exponentially increasing non-oil revenue for the federation.

    “k. A successfully unbundled power sector with an inductive environment for investment.

    “l.An economy that had successfully reduced its personnel cost over the last 5 years.

    “m.Several tools for combating corruption such as IPPIS, TSA, GIFMIS, EFCC & ICPC.

    “In the past year, the APC-led FG has detained and publicly accused Col. Sambo Dasuki & members of our party for corruption. We find it surprising that the FG is asking for secret trials for the accused persons.

    “We urge the FG to try them openly & in respect for the rule of law.

    “We feel compelled to remind Chief Oyegun that not all monies generated from crude oil sales accrue to the Federal Government.

    “Monies from crude sales accrue to Nigeria & its various JV partners. What accrues to Nigeria is then shared between the FG, States & LGAs subject to the deduction of operational expenses.”

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  • Forex Policy: Nigerian economy collapses as South Africa set to overtake Nigeria as Africa’s biggest economy

    23/Jun/2016 // 884 Viewers


    Going by the recent value attrition of the naira against the United States’ dollar due to the floatation of the currency, Nigeria could be upstaged by South Africa as the largest economy on the continent.

    Nigeria’s 2015 Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at $521.8 billion prior to Wednesday’s trading at the inter-bank foreign exchange market may have lost about $157 billion or 30 percent of its value due to the drastic drop of the naira rate against the dollar from N197 to N282. This has threatened Nigeria’s position as the leading and biggest economy in Africa.

    Specifically, at Monday’s dealing, the first in the wake of the new forex policy, the naira crashed 30 percent to N280 to the dollar, with dealers and market watchers admitting there is yet room for the currency to weaken further. And this played out on Tuesday when the value further dipped to N284.
    With a 30 percent loss in value of the naira, the country’s GDP would have shaved off about $157 billion to a new level of $365.3 billion, just $14.7 billion ahead of South Africa’s national output of $350.6 billion.
    Nigeria’s economy surpassed South Africa’s as the largest on the continent in 2014 after a rebasing exercise of its GDP for the first time in two decades.

    Should the naira depreciate further, Nigeria may fail to lay claim to the position of it being the continent’s biggest economy midway into the next rebasing as it would have been overtaken by South Africa with a more stable currency where a US dollar is purchased with 14.8 rand.

    “Though the GDP is really not tangible as it is only an index of the growth of the economy, the $510 billion GDP is at the risk of been eroded and we stand to be upstaged by South Africa, which is currently the second largest  economy”, says Henry Boyo, an economist and industrialist.

    But Ikechukwu Kelikume, Head of Department of Accounting, Banking and Finance of the Lagos Business School (LBS), disagrees.

    According to him, even South Africa is experiencing some contraction and thus poses no threat to Nigeria’s claim as Africa’s biggest economy.
    “The changes in the economy notwithstanding, the second largest economy in Africa (South Africa) is currently experiencing contraction in GDP hence they will not overtake Nigeria in anyway”, he says.

    After expressing support for the new forex regime, which he says will technically address the lapses in the old dispensation (the dirty float exchange rate management system) that gave room for rent seekers, arbitragers and speculators to control the foreign exchange rate market, Kelekume gave a comparison of the two economies.

    “Currently, Nigeria’s GDP contracted to $490 billion while South Africa is currently $313 billion. In terms of GDP growth, annual GDP growth for Nigeria fell from 6.5% in 2014 to 2.7% in 2015 while for South Africa GDP growth rate declined from 1.5% in 2014 to 1.3% in 2015 (IMF World Bank Outlook 2016).

    “For Nigeria Q1:2016, GDP growth saw the country posting a negative GDP growth rate of -0.36% with the possibility of the country posting a negative GDP in Q2:2016 thereby officially entering a recession.”

    He expressed optimism that the “new liberal exchange rate regime will strengthen the Nigerian economy and usher in the much needed FDI to drive the economy”, while reminding us that “what triggered the Nigerian economic crisis was low and unstable oil price” and that “oil price has since risen to $49 per barrel and I believe this will impact positively on the Nigerian economy if the current Niger Delta crisis is addressed”.
    Even if Boyo agreed that devaluation can lead to an influx of foreign capital, he says the value of inflow may not be worth the devaluation, saying that an index foreign investors use to gauge an economy is the stock market index, which he noted has lost 50 percent of its value with naira depreciation.

    “By Friday, the value of stocks on the Nigeria Stock Exchange was N9 to N10 trillion. At $200, it was about $50 billion but by Monday, the value had plummeted to $25 billion.

    “The argument has always been that by devaluing we are going to attract foreign investment. But foreign investment expected is no more than $15 billion. The loss as a result of devaluation is more than what is expected as investment and the value of your exchange is a determinant of the capital you attract”.

    Boyo noted that there are several other immediate problems arising from floating the naira including the erosion in the value of the budget, pension fund and minimum wage.

    According to him, with a 50 percent devaluation “the budget is hit, particularly the capital part of the budget because of the imported components. It is now practically half of that. So any hope that physical infrastructure will improve is gone”.

    In a similar vein, he said that recurrent expenditure is now also 50 percent less and this can lead to more wage increase agitation.
    Commenting on the pool of pension funds, he said, “The N5 trillion pension funds was $25 billion but is now $12.5 billion. Meanwhile you are creating expectations that pensioners will get their benefits down the line, which is unrealistic”.

    Boyo who is the founder of Cocosheen, a beauty product, said that as a result of devaluation, “all foreign loans will need 50 percent more naira value to liquidate them. That is 50 percent more naira to payback.

    And that minimum wage at N18, 000 is 50 percent less and because of this, people who will fall below the poverty line will increase”.

    “N1000 is now equivalent to just $3; we may be needing higher denominations like N5000 or redenominated. Devaluation will trigger higher petrol and diesel prices and affect business of industrialists; industrialists will pay 50 percent higher. Even electricity tariffs will have to go up as a result”, he noted.

    Boyo surmised that any hope that the system will improve or get better is unrealistic because the market is looking at demand and supply of dollar but ignoring demand and supply of the naira.
    “If we continue to have surplus of naira and ration of the dollar, the value of the naira will continue to slide. Because the agency that supplies the naira continues to auction dollar to the people, meaning that even the CBN is betting against the naira”.
    Earning more dollars will not help, Boyo, who has written extensively on the matter, said.

    “In a market where the naira is already superfluous, it is false to hope that by earning more dollars, the naira will appreciate.”
    He, however, recommended that the dollars that the CBN keeps be allocated to government beneficiaries and let them convert to naira within the system. “In that way, you have liberalised, changed the dynamics; banks now increase cash reserve ratio and reduce their ability to use the funds”.

    A big winner of the new floating exchange regime is South Africa’s telecommunication company MTN, recently fined N330 billion by the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC).

    A 30 percent depreciation in value against the dollar means a gain by that margin as the company would pay only 70 percent of that value or N231 billion, thereby effectively saving a whopping N99 billion. - Today.ng

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  • Breaking! Investors boycott Nigeria as Naira collapses again on Wednesdayi, new exchange rate will shock you!

    24/Aug/2016 // 993 Viewers


    The naira tumbled to 402 against the dollar at the parallel market on Wednesday, a day after the Central Bank of Nigeria banned nine banks from the foreign exchange market for failing to remit $2.334bn to the Federal Government’s Treasury Single Account domiciled with the Central Bank of Nigeria.

    The local currency had closed at 397/dollar on Tuesday.

    At the interbank market, the naira closed at 315.93/dollar, lower than 305.5 it recorded on Tuesday.

    The slide being witnessed by the naira has caused costs to soar with the inflation rate hitting an 11-year high at 16.5% in June.

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  • Tears as IMF writes off Nigeria's economy, expresses worries over country's sloppy reform programme

    24/Feb/2017 // 1128 Viewers


    The International Monetary Fund (IMF), on Thursday, urged Nigeria to step up its economic reform efforts before the opportunity for reforms becomes more limited. 

    Addressing a news conference in Washington DC, yesterday, IMF spokesman, Gerry Rice, noted the country urgently needs to implement a coherent set of policies to ease the constraints posed by the country’s economic recession before opportunities for low hanging fruits evaporate.
    Responding to questions on the struggling Africa’s economic giane, the IMF spokesman stated that, “urgency is needed in implementing a coherent and credible package of monetary, fiscal and structural policies as the window for bold reforms is closing with approach of the 2019 general election.”

    Rice also confirmed that the Nigerian authorities have not approached the global lender about a programme but assured the IMF “stands ready to help should the country make a request for financial assistance.”

    Meanwhile, the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, has, said the Federal Government would raise the proportion of government spending devoted to infrastructure to 30 per cent from 10 per cent and would mobilise private capital for additional funding.

    The Federal Government has laid out plans to spend a record N7.29 trillion in 2017, up from N6.06 trillion budgeted for last year, but also needs to find funds to cover shortfall in the budget resulting from lower prices for oil.

    But, Adeosun said she was committed to boosting capital spending across key sectors like power, transport and water, to help drive growth in agriculture, mining and manufacturing.

    “We will now target 30 per cent of government expenditure on infrastructure, up from 10 per cent,” she told an investor conference in Abuja.

    The Minister said the government would tap private capital to complement its own expenditure, adding that fundraising was in progress for housing and road trust funds in partnership with the private sector.

    She also said Nigeria wanted to move towards longer term funding at lower cost as part of government’s plans to borrow up to $10 billion this financial year, with about half coming from foreign sources.

    To help cover the deficit, the country sold $1 billion worth of 15-year eurobonds this month that were almost eight times oversubscribed and the government is now seeking approval from parliament to issue an additional $500 million eurobond.

    Nigeria’s overall debt was 84 per cent domestic and 16 per cent foreign but the government wants to move to 40 per cent foreign debt by the end of 2019 to speed up infrastructure projects and cut borrowing costs.

    On Thursday, the government said it will launch N20 billion “green bond” in April to fund projects to reduce carbon emissions and develop renewable energy.

    It also plans to raise a debut $300 million diaspora bond abroad and sell a maiden sovereign sukuk in the local market.

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  • Surprise Nigeria abandons oil search in the North, returns to N'Delta, hopes to save $31.4 billion on crude oil production

    24/Feb/2017 // 8792 Viewers


    Nigeria is to save a whopping $31.4 billion yearly  on reduced cost of crude oil production, which peaked at $70 per barrel in 2014.

    Speaking yesterday at the 14th Annual Aret Adams Memorial Lecture, with the theme“Find More, Produce More”   held in Lagos, Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr.Maikanti Baru, said the Corporation’s  Unit Technical Cost (UTC) has significantly dropped from above $70 per barrel in 2014, to about $27 per barrel, as at year end 2016.That gives the country a saving of $43 per barrel daily.

    When $43 is multiplied by two million barrels per day, according to latest production figure reeled out by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr. Ibe Kachikwu,Nigeria will be saving about $86 million per day or $31.4 billion yearly.

    Baru, who was represented by the Chief Operating Officer, Gas and Power, Engr. Saidu Mohammed, said NNPC was committed to further driving down the UTC

    He equally disclosed that NNPC has renegotiated its deep offshore rig-rate from a staggering $580,000 to $164,000 per day, saving the country about 71.7 per cent cost of executing similar operations in the past. He added that the Corporation has achieved about 35 per cent downward review of rig rates per day for both swamp and land operations in its portfolios.

    A rig rate is a major cost element incurred by an Exploration and Production (E&P) company in the course of drilling for oil or gas in deep offshore, shallow offshore, swamp, land areas or basins.

    Baru declared that the various reductions serve as an incentive for investors to grow reserves, increase profitability and improve Return On Investment (ROI), adding that they also boost government’s revenue, thus improving its commitment to developmental projects across the country.  The NNPC GMD, solicited the support of all industry stakeholders to achieve more of these lofty aspirations, since according to him, there was an urgent need to link the Industry with other sectors of the Nigerian economy.

    Baru said although the increased oil production involved the cost factor and the commodity price, the Corporation had produced oil within the year with much efficiency.

    “Price may not be readily under our control, but we need to manage cost of production within the Industry. Within the period we took over the reign of leadership in the Corporation, we have been able to drive down cost to a very commendable level.”The GMD explained that to achieve the 40 billion barrels of crude oil reserves and a production of 4Million barrels per day government’s aspiration by 2020, the country needs an incremental of at least 1billion barrels in reserves year-on-year till 2020, and at minimum, half a million barrels in incremental production capacity per day within the same timeframe.

    “Considering our quest for revenue generation as a nation, it is a given that we need to increase our exploration efforts in order to sustain our reserve base and grow production,” he noted.

    He charged industry stakeholders to invest in exploration activities, especially now that crude oil price is low “so that when the tide turns, all we would need to do is to turn on the taps.”

    Baru said NNPC would continue to make investments that are geared towards increasing the national hydrocarbon reserves and daily crude oil & gas production, adding that in this respect, the Corporation was committed to propelling power, industrial and agricultural sectors, through an adequate provision of gas to power and sustainable feedstock to fertilizer and petrochemical industries.

    In his opening remarks, the Chairman of the occasion and former Minister of State for Petroleum, Mr. Odein Ajumogobia, said there was no better time to discuss increased oil production than now.

    Also speaking at the event, Chairman of the Aret Adams Foundation, Mr. Egbert Imomoh, said Nigeria should position itself for the future by finding more oil and producing more of the black gold.

    This year’s Aret Adams Annual Lecture Series is the fourteenth, seeking to immortalize the lofty ideals of Chief Godwin Aret Adams who was former GMD of NNPC, and Adviser on Petroleum  to former Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar between 2008 and 2009. Adams died 15 years ago.

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  • Devaluation: $1 to exchange for N250 and much more on the parallel market

    24/May/2016 // 688 Viewers

    PARIS, MAY 24, 2016: (DGW) THE  devaluation of Nigeria's monetary unit, the NAIRA  will commence today, sources revealed.

    A monetary policy committee meeting is said to be in session in Abuja at the time this report came in.

    The dollar, DailyGlobeWatch understands, will now exchange for N250 which the apex bank is due to announce soon as soon as the meeting is rounded off.

    Before now  the official exchange rate was pegged around N198 – $1 while the parallel market (black market) rate was at N346.

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  • Switzerland set to return $230 million Nigeria's stolen money

    24/May/2016 // 222 Viewers

    Geoffrey Onyema, Nigeria's Foreign Affairs Minister


    PARIS, MAY 24, 2016: (DGW) NIGERIA'S Foreign Affairs Minister, Geoffrey Onyeama said all is now set for Switzerland to refund about $230 million to Nigeria.

    While making this disclosure, he said apart from Switzerland effort is still being made to receive stolen  monies from Nigeria from other stashed away in other  foreign lands.

    The foreign trips embarked upon by the president, he defended were for these purposes and are beginning to yield results, he said.

    He highlighted other areas of success like the victory over Boko Haram insurgency and patted President  Buhari on the back for starting on a very good footing. He said the president would have succeeded in repositioning Nigeria in the path of development and economic prosperity when he leaves office hopefully in 2023.

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  • New Cryptocurrency Replacing the U.S. Dollar?

    24/Nov/2015 // 572 Viewers

    America’s elite aren’t just experts at making money – they’re experts at protecting money. When the stock market goes down, they know to move to gold, when gold goes down they know to move to the dollar.

    But what happens when EVERYTHING goes down?

    Well, for the first time in history, there are digital alternatives.  Including a cryptocurrency that isn’t just an investment, but a real way to purchase top quality goods and services.

    Already, multi-millionaire comedian Jerry Seinfeld uses it when he travels. George Clooney plays characters who use it AND uses it himself when he gets off set.

    It’s not just elite people either. This “point-based” cryptocurrency is also a common feature of elite companies. Airlines, High limit credit cards and exclusive resorts all use it.

    But here’s the best part – our analysts have found a way YOU can invest in it. You don’t have to be a millionaire or have any special access.

    In fact, we predict returns of over $56,000 in the next 9 months.


    Source: dividends and income daily

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  • Naira crash: Foreign airlines now demand dollars for tickets (See new rates on international routes)

    25/Jan/2017 // 1254 Viewers


    AS the naira goes crashing against the dollar in forex, foreign airlines have decided that all tickets for foreign flights must be sold in dollars, a situation that has caused unreasonable hikes in air fares. Reports have shown that an economy class on a British Airways flight to London now costs between N600,000 and N700,000 against the former rates of N350,000 and N400,000 a year ago. This represents a huge increase of over 120 per cent.
    Investigation has shown that airfares for international routes are now increased by 100 per cent while some foreign airlines like Delta, United and others, do not accept the naira as passengers, both inbound and outbound, are made to pay with a dollar-paying debit card or the ticket will not be processed.
    National Daily also gathered from investigation on major Nigerian routes flown by foreign airlines in the country that the cost of return tickets had been increased by between 80 per cent and 120 per cent against the previous fares, depending on the carrier, time of booking and the season.
    The routes examined in the course of investigation were Nigeria-North America, Nigeria-South Africa and Nigeria-Europe routes. Also, airfares on the Lagos-London, Abuja-London, Lagos-New York, Lagos-Atlanta, Lagos-Houston, and Lagos-Johannesburg routes were equally examined.
    Findings have indicated that an economic ticket on Air France for the Lagos/Abuja-London routes now goes for over N600,000, while Lufthansa charges little above N680,000. These represent an increase of 80 per cent and 90 per cent, respectively, when compared with an average fare of N300,000 on the routes a year ago.
    Meanwhile, a business class ticket now goes for as high as N3m as against the N1.5m a year ago on the Lagos-London route.
    On the Lagos-Atlanta and Lagos-Houston routes, Delta Airlines and United Airlines, which used to fly Economy Class passengers for between N270,000 and N330,000 some 12 months ago, now render the same service at an average fare of N600,000, depending on the time of booking. This represents an increase of about 100 per cent.
    South Africa Airways and Arik Air, which used to fly the Lagos-Johannesburg routes for between N100,000 and N120,000 for the economy class, now fly the route for between N180,000 and N220,000, depending on the time of booking and the season.
    The Lagos-Paris route, which used to go for N180,000 on the average, now goes for around N400,000. This represents an increase of 120 per cent.
    Operators link the increment in fares to the scarcity of foreign exchange to attend to the operational needs of the carriers and the erosion in the value of the ticket sales proceeds, which are now stuck in banks due to lack of forex to repatriate the funds.
    Late last year, the new administration of President Muhammadu Buhari had unveiled a fiscal policy, through the Central Bank of Nigeria, restricting access to foreign exchange and funds transfer out of the country.
    While this has had advantages on some sectors of the economy, foreign airline operators have complained of their inability to repatriate revenue to their operational bases as a result of the new policy.
    An official of one the airlines told National Daily that the carrier had close to N90bn as accumulated earnings in banks, which it had been unable to repatriate. He said that the airline industry relied heavily on cash to meet its commitments, adding that it was sad that the government was not seeing things this way.
    With huge airline revenue in the vaults of the banks, some of the operators are nursing fears of being exposed to risks should the pressure on the naira lead to the devaluation of the currency, which could erode the value of the funds by about 35 per cent to 45 per cent.
    Following the difficulty in repatriating earnings from Nigeria, some of the airlines initially began restricting cheap fares on the Nigerian routes in the last quarter of 2015, leading to an indirect hike in fares.
    At the time, the effect was felt more on second tier routes from Lagos-London-Atlanta, Lagos-London-New York, Lagos-London-Miami, Lagos-London-São Paulo, Lagos-London-Houston; or Lagos-Frankfurt-New York, Lagos-Frankfurt-Chicago, Lagos-Frankfurt-Los Angeles, and Lagos-Frankfurt-Shanghai.
    Citing Nigeria’s slowing economy amid forex scarcity, some international airlines are now contemplating reducing flights to the country or operating smaller capacity aircraft as a short-term measure.
    Virgin Atlantic and Iberia are already on the verge of pulling out of the country, giving reasons that the route is no longer benefitting them commercially.
    However, following complaints by the airlines, representatives of the International Air Transport Association, reportedly, pleaded with the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, to intervene in the matter and make dollars available to them. They also involved the Minister of Transport, Chibuike Amaechi, to exert his influence on the issue.
    But the move hasn’t yielded any positive results yet. A spokesperson for one of the airlines noted that the difficulty in repatriating revenues was affecting aircraft leases and fuelling, stating that the earnings were partly being used for fuel and renewing aircraft leases.
    While the situation persists, the effect on air travellers and other businesses that depend so much on air travel has been overwhelming. A manager with a transport and logistic company, Mr. Emmanuel Iruobe, was quoted recently saying the company had incurred more costs than were provided for in the execution of most contracts this year.
    Iruobe urged the government to look into the situation with a view to resolving the situation in the interest of Nigerians and many other prospective investors eying Nigeria.
    The situation also infuriated some stakeholders in the travel industry under the aegis of the National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies (NANTA). They faulted the astronomical cost of air tickets by the airlines, especially the foreign carriers in their most recent chats with aviation correspondents, vehemently expressing their plight.
    The group had petitioned the Federal Government, through the Ministry of Aviation, to caution the foreign airlines over the alleged sharp practices, describing the situation where taxes that go to the airlines are higher than base fares as unacceptable.
    Meanwhile, spokesman of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, Mr. Sam Adurogboye, told National Daily that some reports about airfare hikes have no basis to prompt any action against the airlines. He insisted that if the NCAA is privy to any credible information of distrust or actual evidence of hike against any airline, it would take it up without delay, adding that passengers were in position to report to the agency with valid information.
    In his words: “The stories have no basis to prompt any action from us; they are only popping up without verifiable facts. I also saw stories like that in some Nigerian dailies but when we confronted the airlines in question, they denied, saying it was a mere blackmail.
    But if any passenger comes to us with convincing evidence of payment that they were made to suffer such experience, we will definitely take it up against the airline,” he said.
    On why Virgin and Iberia are prepared to pull out of the country, Adurogboye said their pulling out is not motivated by diplomatic problems but commercial benefit, as the airlines are in business and wouldn’t want to operate at a loss.
    “Virgin and Iberia pulled out sometime ago but came back to re-establish operations. The truth is that they can decide to pull out of any route anytime, especially when they are not making significant commercial value from it. So, I think their decision to pull out now largely depends on what favours them; you know they are in business so they can’t be operating at a loss. There is no diplomatic issue involved in their pulling out, it is basically for their benefit.
    *This post appeared first on National Daily

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