The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has released $265 million to domestic airlines to settle outstanding ticket sales.
The apex bank stated that this move was meant to check a brewing crisis in the country’s aviation sector.
Details of the $265m show that $230m was released as special foreign exchange intervention while another $35m was released through the Retail SMIS auction.
Disclosing this in a statement, the Director, Corporate Communications Department, CBN, Mr Osita Nwanisobi, said the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, and his team were concerned about the development and what it portends for the sector and travellers as well as the country in the comity of nations.
Nwanisobi reiterated that the bank was not against any company repatriating its funds from the country, adding that what the bank stood for was an orderly exit for those that might be interested in doing so.
“With Friday’s release, it is expected that operators and travellers as well will heave huge sighs of relief, as some airlines had threatened to withdraw their services in the face of unremitted funds for outstanding sale of tickets,” CBN said.
There has been serious concerns and reactions over hundreds of millions of dollars earned by foreign airlines operating in the country which they could not repatriate due to foreign exchange scarcity problems.