The International Air Transportation Association (IATA) has revealed that the revenue belonging to foreign airlines in Nigeria that is being withheld from repatriation as of July 2022 is the sum of $464 million.
This was revealed in a tweet by IATA on its official Twitter handle on Thursday. It said the funds which stood at $450 million in May increased to $464 million in July showing a $14 million increase.
These blocked funds are ticket sales revenues that Nigeria is yet to remit to the airlines due to the paucity of foreign exchange.
Though the federal government has said its inability to release the funds was as a result of the foreign exchange crisis, for the foreign airlines, it has become more difficult to operate and invest in Nigeria as they are unable to harness revenue from their services.
IATA urged the government of Nigeria to prioritise the release of funds before more damage is done and the failure to do so will affect Nigeria with reduced air connectivity.
‘’IATA is disappointed that the amount of airline money blocked from repatriation by the Nigerian government grew to $464 million in July.
“IATA’s many warnings that failure to restore timely repatriation will hurt Nigeria with reduced air connectivity are proving true with the withdrawal of Emirates from the market.
“Airlines can’t be expected to fly if they can’t realise revenue from ticket sales. Loss of connectivity harms the economy, hurts investor confidence, impacts jobs and people’s lives.
“The government of Nigeria needs to prioritise the release funds before more damage is done.” The tweet reads.