Nigeria’s major airports in Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt and Kano could generate over N45 billion annually from the current N19 billion, if they are given out in concession to attract private sector funding, experts have said.
It was gathered that the concession of these airports would expand and modernise the facilities.
With such facilities, it is expected that more international carriers would fly into the country, which would boost the aeronautical revenues.
Industry experts said most of the additional revenues would come from non-aeronautical resources, including advertisement, service charges, concession fees, excursion charges and access gate charges and others.
Chris Aligbe, aviation industry consultant and chief executive officer of Belujane Konsult, said that if the airports were concessioned, they would generate over N45 billion annually, adding that concession not only creates jobs but also multiplies revenue.
“Under concession, N45 billion is a child’s play. That is mere $12 million; even the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) will generate more than that if concessioned. They have no idea what a concessioned airport can generate until they compare the revenues of the airports under government management and the one that had been concessioned. MMIA can generate more than that, followed by the Abuja airport.
“People do not know the magnitude of the money the airports could generate. There is a system of incompetence in the management of the airports. The system they are managing is incompetent, which is imposed on competent managers and making them look incompetent. What will be realised will be huge – much more than N45 billion,” Aligbe stated.
Currently, none of Nigeria’s airports is in the first 10 rating of the best airports in Africa and none of them has met any global standards of good airports.
The federal government had indicated that it would concession the airports so that investors would commit funds to infrastructural development.
The government would start the concession with the four major airports in the country, Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos; Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja; Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano; and Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa.
In the first tenure of the Buhari administration, concession was identified as one of the cardinal goals to transform the aviation industry.
In 2017, the scope of the concession was expanded into two phases, and the ministry of aviation was working in collaboration with the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) to concession those airports by 2020.
Hadi Sirika, the minister of aviation, had explained that the quest to concession the maintenance of airport infrastructure and the building of new ones across the country was to maintain high standard and efficiency in the running of airport operations in tandem with global standards.