Emirates Airline to suspend flight operations to Nigeria
Emirates Airlines announced that it will suspend its flights to Nigeria from September 1, 2022.
This was disclosed by the flag carrier of United Arab Emirates (UAE), in a statement issued on Thursday, August 18, and cited the inability to repatriate its foreign exchange earnings from Nigeria.
Since the start of the year, Nigeria has blocked at least $600 million from more than 20 foreign airlines.
Two weeks ago, Emirates stated that it had $85 million in Nigeria from these funds.
Emirates asked Hadi Sirika (Nigeria’s minister of aviation) to help with the repatriation of its revenues, which total $85 million.
The airline reduced its Lagos Airport frequency from 11 to 7 on Monday, August 15.
It has now announced that all flights to Nigeria are going to be suspended starting September 1.
The airline said the suspension would “limit further losses and reduce the impact on its operational costs that continue to accumulate in the Nigerian market”.
Emirates Airlines said in a statement: “Therefore, Emirates has taken the difficult decision to suspend all flights to and from Nigeria, effective 1 September 2022, to limit further losses and impact on our operational costs that continue to accumulate in the market.
“We sincerely regret the inconvenience caused to our customers, however, the circumstances are beyond our control at this stage. We will be working to help impacted customers make alternative travel arrangements wherever possible.
“Should there be any positive developments in the coming days regarding Emirates’ blocked funds in Nigeria, we remain keen to serve Nigeria, and our operations provide much-needed connectivity for Nigerian travellers, providing access to trade and tourism opportunities to Dubai, and to our broader network of over 130 destinations.”