Bola Tinubu 1

AVIATION: IATA Calls on Nigeria to Release Blocked Airline Funds

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has warned Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu about the country’s position as a result of an increase in blocked fund levels.

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As of April 2023, the blocked fund had increased to $812 million. Kamil Alawadhi, regional vice president for Africa and the Middle East at IATA, said that up until December of last year, when the general elections stopped the process, IATA and the Nigerian government had strong relations over the repatriation of blocked cash.

However, the change in administration led to a backlog of blocked funds. Alawadhi did point out that the international airline organization would meet with officials of the new administration to resolve the backlog of blocked money following the regime change in Nigeria.

Alawadhi predicted that the new administration would release 50% of the trapped funds right away and set up the necessary infrastructure to release the remaining 50% over the course of a few months.

The IATA VP claims that because airlines withheld funds, Nigeria was given a bad reputation by the international investment community, which caused many investors to avoid the nation. He claimed that the tragic occurrence had also resulted in expensive tickets in Nigeria.

“Every penny counts; the pandemic has had an impact on airlines,” he said. To keep their operations running efficiently, airlines require money. In order to get the blocked cash returned as soon as feasible, we would work with the new Nigerian government, he stated.

This makes it difficult for airlines to continue providing the vital connectivity that fuels economic growth and job creation globally. As a result, they are becoming more unable to repatriate their commercial income from the affected regions.