Sirika: Why aviation fuel prices in Nigeria went up

 Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika that the Federal Government and the country’s carriers would have to reach a middle ground on how to stem the continuous price of aviation fuel, urging the operators not to be part of the problem and not add to the by their actions that also led to a crisis in the aviation industry.

Sirika who spoke at the 7th Africa-Indian Ocean (AFI) Aviation Week currently going in Abuja attributed the high cost of Jet A1 in Nigeria to high demand for crude oil including the ongoing Russian-Ukraine crisis, low capacity to refine Jet A1 around the world.

His words, “There is huge demand and the population of the world is increasing. There is a huge demand for these products. It is not peculiar to Nigeria. It is worse in other countries in terms of pricing and availability. So, it is something we have to live with and I am sure they understand that”.

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“If you continue to pass the buck to the passengers, you will kill the transportation business or you make the air transportation unattractive. A middle ground would have to be found and I am sure it would be found. In Nigeria, what we are going to do and in a meeting held in the Presidency”.

The Minister disclosed that the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) was going to look for a way to get the commodity through the oil majors or deep oil and once there is more supply.

With that, he said, there would be less demand leading to price stability, hinting that the country was looking at ways to refine the commodity.

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An aircraft re-fuels at an airport

He further stated that the country’s to refine Jet A1 in the country because of the less quantity of the imported refined product has discouraged from setting up refineries for it.

“When you have to bring it in from outside, there is the landing cost, the charges, taxes and that adds to the price of Jet A1.

“ It is really biting around the world. We hope the airlines do understand this because what is sold in Nigeria is not the highest in the world and they can attest to the government of Buhari that has been very impactful on their businesses because the number of airlines has doubled; that means we are doing the right things. I think the government is doing a lot for them just to mention a few in terms of support”.

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Wole Shadare