Passengers boarding an aircraft
By Our Reporter
Airline operators in Nigeria have threatened to shut down operations in three days if the price of aviation fuel, popularly known as Jet-A1, is not brought down.
They called on the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Ltd to give them a licence to import the product in order to avert the shutdown.
Chairman, Air Peace, Allen Onyema, made the call at a stakeholders’ meeting with the deputy speaker, House of Representatives, Ahmed Idris Wase, on Monday.
The meeting, attended by the NNPC Group Managing Director, Mele Kyari, marketers and airline operators in the country, was a follow up to the earlier meeting held on the scarcity and high price of aviation fuel in the country.
Onyema, who spoke on behalf of the airline operators, said aviation fuel marketers are arbitrarily increasing the product’s price which led to the skyrocketing of air ticket prices and disruptions of flights.
According to him, the marketers have refused to disclose the intricacies involved in the pricing and how they arrived at the hike.
He informed that the recent price hike to over N500 started in January 2022 from its initial price.
Onyema said though he was not threatening any further hike in the ticket price, an airline ticket may rise to N120,000 in no distant future.
He added that, apart from the high cost of aviation fuel, airline operators are paying threefold of what other airlines pay as insurance in other climes.
Onyema added that since they can buy aircraft that cost hundreds of millions of dollars, they also have the money to import aviation fuel.
Earlier, the deputy speaker had expressed his disappointment over the failure of the NNPC and the marketers to bring down the price as agreed in the last meeting.
He alleged that the two parties were using unnecessary technical terms to confuse the House over the issue.
On his part, the NNPC GMD said, as of present, 19 companies have stock of aviation fuel, but the pricing still remains a thing of contention between the companies and airline operators.
He added that they have engaged other companies to supply aviation fuel to airlines in order to increase its availability.