It is now mandatory for all Nigerian registered airlines to join the clearing house of the International Air Transport Association(IATA).

The Minister of Aviation, Princess Stella Adaeze Oduah has directed while briefing journalists in Abuja in commemoration of the 100 days of the President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan’s administration.

This directive, She explained was aimed at sanitizing the air transport business and ensure transparency in all their financial transactions coupled with ensuring seamless interlining of travelers with world renowned carriers.

According to her, in charting a new vision for the industry, the Ministry has developed initiatives to enhance growth in the aviation industry by:” Mandating all airlines to join IATA platform in the revenue collection process and enable inter-airline ticket endorsement.

Airline members of IATA enjoy the support of an internationally renowned organization that represents leads and serves one of the most dynamic industries in the world.

From 57 founding members in 1945, IATA now represents some 238 airlines in over 115 countries from around the globe. Carrying 93% of the world’s international scheduled traffic, IATA members include the world’s leading passenger and cargo airlines.

She further noted that IATA membership is open to airlines operating both scheduled and non-scheduled services that covers two categories ranging from active membership and associate membership.

Mrs. Oduah noted that active membership are for airlines operating either international services or international and domestic services while that of associate membership are for airlines for airlines operating domestic services only adding that the IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) is a pre-requisite of IATA membership.

To assist the airlines in the area of high operational cost, the Minister said the Ministry has intervened by setting up a committee to look into the scarcity of aviation fuel and how it could be procured at affordable price to lower the cost of operations and the air fares being charged.

On the issue of Concessions entered into by the Ministry/Agencies of Government with some companies, Princess Oduah said the Ministry was set to review all of them in favour of the  people and Government of Nigeria, adding that,:” You enter into concession where you do not have the skilled manpower so that it can be beneficial to you.

But in the case of concession entered into with this companies the reverse is the case. Nigerian government must benefit from the concessions and improve the revenue base”

She said the Ministry in conjunction with various were pursuing the redemption of huge debts owed by airlines and that henceforth there would be no room for accumulation of debts with tha introduction of electronic system of payment.
She further disclosed that the recertification of pilots, engineers and Aircraft Maintenance Organizations (AMO) was being embarked upon in line with standard aviation procedures so as to improve on safety.

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