- Operators Lament Declining Contribution of Aviation to GDP
The aviation sector needs to contribute immensely to the economy and improve from its present 0.4 per cent to a very significant figure, the Airline Operators of Nigeria has said.
The AON said that despite the potential of the industry and its ability to create about 200,000 direct and indirect jobs for the country, it had continued to perform below expectation.
According to data released recently by the National Bureau of Statistics, the output in the air transport sector, as well as its contribution to the Gross Domestic Product, declined in 2016, as several airlines had operational issues.
The NBS noted that output in the sector declined by 4.9 per cent between 2015 and 2016.
The Chairman, AON, Capt. Nogie Meggison, said the policy for economic sustenance had not been looked into by the government and other relevant stakeholders.
“That is why we are having this hostile environment today. Economic lives of these airlines have been discarded as a non-issue by the government, but the truth is that no economic/financial life, no safety, and this is what is affecting us today,” he said.
He added that the operating environment was responsible for the death of 25 airlines in the country in the last 30 years.
“If you look at the numbers carefully, all 25 cannot do it wrong; what is the reason for their death? Till the financial/economic policy is addressed to steady the airlines, what we will be having is off and on like what we are having today. Nigerian carriers, with sound policy system, can be a feeder for any major international airline that comes in because we are big enough,” he said.
Meggisson stated that the government should consider investing in aviation as a catalyst for growth as obtained globally.
According to him, one of the ways of doing this is to harmonise taxes in the industry and adopt a flat rate for the Ticket Sales Charge, which is currently five per cent.
He added, “The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority is a regulatory agency, just like the International Air Transport Association, which is not run as a profitable organisation. Nigeria should look at the TSC as a flat rate. We need to address issues one by one to get us to where we should be.
“More flights will come in and there will be more landings in Nigeria if we bring down these costs so that people can travel more and they won’t travel by road anymore. For Nigeria to come out of recession, it needs to spend. As they say, aviation is a catalyst for growth anywhere in the world.”
NNPC to Focus on Domestic Gas Growth, Says Kyari
FG, NNPC to Focus on Growing Domestic Gas Utilisation
Mr. Mele Kyari, the Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), has said the corporation is presenting focusing on growing domestic gas utilisation.
The Managing Director disclosed this on Tuesday during a virtual BusinessDay Energy Series Summit with the theme, “Nigeria at 60: Harnessing Nigeria’s Energy for the Future.”
The NNPC boss also said the corporation is committed to delivering key gas infrastructures such as Escravos-Lagos Pipeline System II, Obiafu-Obrikom-Oben Gas Pipeline, Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano Gas Pipeline, and Central Gas Processing Facilities.
He stated that NNPC was working on developing five gigawatts of power generation by 2022.
He said, “At the NNPC we are aggressively pursuing other gas development initiatives with the aim of improving Nigeria’s economy using the appropriate fuels.
“In terms of gas and power, we are developing and integrating gas and power infrastructure networks (increase interconnectivity) as well as stimulating gas demand (power generation, feedstock and transport, etc).”
Kennie Obateru, the NNPC spokesperson, quoted the NNPC boss in a statement issued in Abuja. He said the corporation was working on domestic gas utilisation to five billion standard cubic feet of gas per day.
He added that the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas Train 7 would be completed and delivered by 2024.
Senator Rejects Aisha Umar From North-East as PenCom DG Replacement for South-East
Law Markers Rejects President Buhari’s PenCOM Director-General Nominee
The Senate has rejected President Buhari nominated Director-General of the National Pension Commission, Aisha Umar.
Some of the Senators, who vehemently protested the nomination immediately the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, read Buhari’s letter said Aisha Umar from the North-East should not be replacing the former DG, Mrs Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, who is from the South-East.
The aggrieved senators said the action of the president is flagrant breach of the Act that established the PenCom.
According to Section 20(1) and section 21(1) and (2) of the National Pension Commission Act 2014, states, “In the event of a vacancy, the President shall appoint replacement from the geopolitical zone of the immediate past member that vacated office to complete the remaining tenure.”
Meaning President Buhari had acted against the Act establishing the PenCom.
Speaking on behalf of the aggrieved Senators, Enyinnaya Abaribe, the Senate Minority Leader, said “I recall that the tenure of the incumbent was truncated. Therefore, the new letter from the president that has now moved the chairman of the commission to another zone may not be correct.
“It is against the law setting up the National Pension Commission and the Federal Character Commission.
“Before you (Lawan) send it to the appropriate committee tomorrow, (Wednesday), I wish to draw the attention of the committee to it.”
The Senate President, however, rejected the minority leader’s point of order and observation, saying “That is for me to interpret because I interpret the laws here. If there is any petition to that effect it should be sent to the committee.”
Electricity Regulatory Commission Suspends Tariff Increase for 14 Days
Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission Suspends Tariff Increase for 14 Days
The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has suspended the increase in electricity tariff in accordance with the resolution reached between the Federal Government and the Nigerian Labour Congress and Civil Rights groups.
The commission suspended the new tariff implemented on September 1, 2020 for 14 days.
The NERC, in its Order No. NERC/209/2020 issued around 10.30 pm on Tuesday, describing the regulatory instrument as “NERC Order on suspension of the Multi Year Tariff Order 2020 for the electricity distribution licensees.”
The commission said, “This order shall take effect from 28th September 2020 and shall cease to have effect on the 11th October 2020.”
This is coming a day after the labour union agreed to halt a nationwide industrial action to allow the government fashioned out a way to address the recent increase in prices from pump price to electricity bill.
Labour had described Federal Government action as anti-people policy, especially given current economic realities.
The government on the other hand had said the hikes were touch necessary decision to advance the nation’s economy and further improve power supply and revenue generation necessary to deepen economic growth.
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