Ethiopian Airlines has expressed its readiness to partner with Nigeria on the federal government’s planned national carrier.
Ethiopian Airlines Managing Director, International Services, Mr. Esayas Haliu, spoke to a team of Nigerian journalists in Addis Ababa. He said the airline has succeeded in all it had established with many countries in Africa.
The airline stressed that a country with such huge passenger traffic needs government-backed airline and it has all it takes which includes technical know-how, equipment, and personnel to partner with the planned carrier.
Hailu noted that the largest economy in Africa with such a huge population, which he described as most precious Nigeria truly deserves a national carrier.
“There have been attempts to off-load some bids for foreign airlines by the Nigerian government. Ethiopian has always been participating in that but so far, we have not been picked. But we are able, capable and ready and whenever the vacancy is created. We are ready to come for any partnership.
“Secondly, Nigeria has been a very good host and by their volume of the population which is demography dividends, the most precious resource is the human resource. The largest economy, the mobility is very high both domestically and foreign, for that; Nigeria really requires a national carrier. We wish them success. If we are required to support, we are ready and willing to do that. Any partnership that arises from that is most welcome and we are in expectation of that”.
The East African carrier also hinted that it plans to introduce a second frequency into Lagos, through the Murtala Muhammed International airport.
He noted that Africa has only three percent of the global air travel market. And 80 percent of that market was dominated by international carriers, leaving African carriers with only 20 percent.
According to him, the full implementation of SSATM would free the market from mega-carriers, as the treaty guarantees access to African airlines to all signatory nations.