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Nigeria Airways’ resurrects as ‘Nigeria Air.’ What lessons 15 years after?

Emerging reports say that the Nigerian government on Wednesday in London unveiled a new national airline to be known as Nigeria Air

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Emerging reports say that the Nigerian government on Wednesday in London unveiled a new national airline to be known as Nigeria Air.

The ceremony comes 15 years after the former Nigeria Airways went moribund and literally got buried. The official unveiling of name and logo of the country’s new flag carrier, came in the absence of any fleet for the airline.

Named Nigeria Air, Presidency officials say that the new enterprise “will bring Nigeria closer to the world.”

The Wednesday ceremony held at the Farnborough International Public Airshow in London. Speaking at the event, Nigeria’s Minister of State for Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, said the federal government would not interfere in the management of the business.

“It is a business, not a social service. Government will not be involved in running it or deciding who runs it. The investors will have full responsibility for this,” he said.

Sirika, in a tweet via his official Twitter handle, Tuesday, said he had negotiated Aircraft orders with Airbus of Farnborough and planned to meet with Boeing and other suppliers.

“We intend to get a 30 aircraft market in five years. But we will begin with five aircraft on the day of launch,” he said.

Read Also: All you need to know about sack of Mozambique airline board

The Nigerian government appears eager to learn from the mistakes of the past. Alluding to government plans to stay away from directly managing the business, the Director General of Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Chidi Izuwah, said:

“Though, you need that initial government financial to make it take off, but what is important is that the national carrier will be entirely private sector controlled.

“There will be zero government interference. But if that happens, it invalidates the certificate (Outline Business Case Certificate of Compliance for the establishment of the airline) and the entire process.”

Attempts to resuscitate Nigeria Airways led to a joint venture between Nigerian investors and Richard Branson’s Virgin Group but this crashed in 2012 due largely to what was considered undue government interference and refusal to stay within the letters and spirit of the contract.

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VenturesNow

Somalia gives foreign banks licence to operate in decades

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The Somali government has announced the licensing of foreign banks for the first time in over two decades six weeks after President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud was sworn into office following an elections that took years to conduct following a lingering political crisis.

The announcement which was made on Monday by the governor of the Central Bank of Somalia (CBS) Abdirahman Mohamed Abdullahi, said the war-ravaged country has granted banking licenses to two foreign institutions to operate in the country after President Mohamoud had promised to open the country to international investment during his campaigns for the elections.

The first foreign banking institutions to benefit from the decision are Egyptian bank, Banque Misr, and Turkish bank, Ziraat Katilim, who have been allowed to operate in Somalia.

“The review of the applications of these two banks has been the subject of a lengthy process of several months.

“These are two strong banks that will add value to the development of Somalia’s financial sector and contribute to the growth of our economy,” the CBS governor said

Ranked one of the poorest countries in the world by the World Bank, the average Somalian lives on less than $1.90 a day as the country struggles to recover from decades civil war and and opening its doors to foreign investments is seen as President Mohamoud fulfilment of his pledge to improve the economic situation and provide basic banking services to the population.

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Egypt Suez Canal announces record $7bn profit in 2021-2022

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The management of the Egyptian Suez Canal has announced a record profit of $7 billion for the 2021-2022 fiscal year, which it said was as a result of repeatedly raising transit fees for ships through the crucial passage for world trade.

The Suez Canal Authority (SCA), said on Monday that between July 2021 and June 2022, about 1.32 billion tonnes of cargo transited through the canal, providing a $7 billion rent in transit fees, which is the highest in the history of the SCA, its Executive Chairman, Admiral Osama Rabie, said.

Rabie added that the Canal was able to increase its profit by 20.7% compared to the previous financial year where it made €5.5 billion.

The Suez Canal handles about 10% of the world’s maritime trade and is one of Cairo’s main sources of foreign currency and despite the war in Ukraine and the rise in the oil price which has affected shipping, the canal also recorded its highest monthly turnover in April, valued at €605 million according to Rabie.

“The international crises have demonstrated the importance of the Suez Canal for the stability of global supply chains,” Rabie said.

He added that the Canal has contributed significantly to the growth of the North African country’s economy which has been caught between inflation of over 15% and a recent devaluation of the pound by nearly 20%, which had increased transit fees for oil and gas shipments by 6% in February and then by 5 to 10% in March.

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