Senate stops $3,000 charge on private jet operators

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The Senate Committee on Aviation has asked the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, NAMA, to suspend the recent charges it imposed on local and foreign registered private airline operators, on non-scheduled flights in Nigeria.

Chairman, Senate Committee on Aviation, Senator Hope Uzodinma, gave the advice during a tripartite meeting held with NAMA management and private aircraft operators on non scheduled flights.

He also asked NAMA to immediately convey a stakeholders meeting in collaboration with the Ministry of Aviation for the purpose of consulting with the operators and adopt a levy that would be mutually acceptable to all parties.

NAMA had recently introduced a new a pay-as-you-go charge, whereby foreign registered airline operators were expected to pay a flat levy of $3, 000 while their indigenous counterparts were levied $2, 000 on each flight embarked upon by their aircraft.

Before the new levy, our correspondent gathered that the operators were charged based on their routes, navigational terminal and weight of their aircraft and the various amounts were paid to different aviation agencies operating at the nation’s airports.

Spokesperson for the private airlines operators on non-scheduled flights in Nigeria, Bala Na’allah, had described the new levies introduced by NAMA as discriminatory because the arrangement was not applicable to airline operators on scheduled flights.

Na’allah agreed that the Civil Aviation Act 2006 section 30 (2) gives power to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority to impose levies but argued that such levies should not be imposed without adequate consultations with relevant stakeholders.

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