FX backlog: Foreign airlines fault CBN’s settlement claim, insist $700m still trapped

Adebari Oguntoye
Adebari Oguntoye
Foreign airlines

Foreign airlines operating in the country have faulted the announcement by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, that it has settled all outstanding backlogs of valid foreign exchange claims.

On Wednesday, the CBN said it has cleared the balance of $7 million pending valid forex backlog.

Also, in January this year, the apex bank disclosed that it had concluded the payment of all verified claims by foreign airlines with the payment of an additional $64.44 million to the concerned airlines.

However, the President of the Association of Foreign Airlines and Representatives in Nigeria, AFARN, Kingsley Nwokoma, in an interview with Leadership on Thursday that about $700 million belonging to foreign airlines was still trapped in the country.

He challenged the CBN to show evidence of payment, if it truly cleared the backlog of FX belonging to the foreign airlines.

“This statement is just like the same thing they said the last time. If they say they cleared all forex backlog, which includes the foreign airlines’ backlog, it’s easy, it’s just for them to show everyone evidence to show that the foreign airlines backlog has been paid.

“However, it’s still the same amount they paid. They paid twice, and we all know that the foreign airlines are complaining that they are still owed over $700 million.

“If they say they have cleared it, then they should be transparent because transparency means showing how much they have paid to each sector, they should let us know,” Nwokoma stated.

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