Minister of State for Transportation (Aviation), Hadi Sirika, has unveiled the new national carrier called Nigeria Air in Farnborough, the United Kingdom.
Speaking while unveiling the name, Sirika said: This is an important day for Nigeria. Largest economy in Africa, largest population, GDP of around half a billion dollars, and the only true aviation player in West and Central Africa."
According to him, "Nigeria has unfortunately not been a serious player in Aviation for a long time. We used to be a dominant player, through Nigeria Airways, but sadly not anymore.
"This will be a National Carrier that is private sector led and driven. 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.
"The Nigerian Government will not own more than 5% (maximum) of the new National Carrier. Government will not be involved in running it or deciding who runs it.
"We want to use this new private-sector-led airline to make a statement that, ‘Yes, Nigeria can do it!’..."
The minister said 81 routes (domestic, regional and international) have been identified for now, for Nigeria Air, out of more than a thousand considered.