THE multiple entries allocated to foreign airlines flying into Nigeria would not hamper the progress of domestic airline operators, Lufthansa airline official said. Multiple entries are part of the Bilateral Air Service Agreement (BASA) between two countries, which allows an airline to fly into more than one designated point or airport.
Addressing a news conference in Lagos on Tuesday, the General Manager, West Africa Region for Lufthansa Airlines, Mr Herbert Reichle, contended that the practice would not affect domestic service operators negatively. â€œMultiple entries will create connectivity with domestic airlines as well as in the development of airports,â€ Reichle said.
The Lufthansa boss said between January and September 2009, the airline transported 120,000 passengers between Nigeria and Germany and 40 per cent more than the number of passengers transported same period in 2008.
He said the airline had begun discussions with domestic airlines on areas of co-operation on how to make optimal use of its multiple entries. Lufthansa has been present in Nigeria since 1962 with daily flights to Lagos, daily flights to Abuja and four weekly flights to Port Harcourt. It flies to Nigeria more often than to any other country in Africa,â€ the airline boss said.
According to him, the airline is embarking on cooperation on Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul through its Lufthansa â€œTechnikâ€ or catering services.
He said the airline operated 97 weekly flights to 17 destinations in 14 countries in Africa. Reichle said that the airline had acquired five additional airlines in Europe.
He gave the names of the airlines as Swiss International Airlines of Zurich, Switzerland, JetBlue of New York, Brussels Airlines of Belgium; British Midland, UK and Austrian Airlines of Vienna, Austria.