Middle East Carriers Take Advantage of Nigeria’s Thriving Air Travel Market

Middle East Carriers Take Advantage of Nigeria’s Thriving Air Travel Market

From Business Day Nigeria

The big boom in Nigeria’s air travel market in the last one year, is attracting major players from the Middle-East, now regarded as the emerging hub of international air travel.

Etihad Airways, Royal Jordanian Airlines, the national carriers of the United Arabs Emirates (UAE) and Jordan, launched daily and fortnightly flights into Lagos consecutively, within one year, and indications are that more big players in that region are gearing up to launch operations into Nigeria.

This is besides the 14 weekly flights already being done by Emirates, another 14 by Qatar Airways, and others still, by their counterpart border airlines, such as Afriquiyya Airways (Tripoli), Egypt Air (Cairo) and Turkish Airlines (Istanbul).

At the launch of Royal Jordanian into Nigeria last week, a senior official of the airline said “a survey conducted showed that daily operations into Nigeria would be useful to our expansion strategy into other networks”.

“Feasibility studies show that running  regular flights to Nigeria will be useful to our expansion strategy that goes beyond flying to the traditional markets of Europe, United States and the Far East”, Bassel Kilani, the airline’s spokesman said, adding that “The importance of Africa, as well as the economic and industrial boom that the continent is witnessing, called for the decision by Jordan to operate direct flights to Lagos”.

Etihad Airways commenced flights between Lagos and Abu Dhabi in July last yaer, operating six flights per week, with the frequency quickly increasing in March 2013 to a daily service, as a result of its success on the route.

“There is a huge amount of international interest and investment focused towards Nigeria. Our fast growing global route network continues to prove popular for the large numbers of international traders and the business community flying between West Africa and the United Arab Emirates, and the major cities in North and Southeast Asia and the Indian Subcontinent”, Maurice Phohleli, Etihad Airways’ general manager, Nigeria and West Africa, said during the airline’s first anniversary in Nigeria.
Read more at BusinessDayNigeria.com.