‘Aviation sector will gain from new GDP’
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), Sunday, released Nigeria’s nominal GDP which showed a rise from N54.2 trillion in 2010 to N80.2 trillion in 2013 ($510 billion).
With this new GDP status, Nigeria is now the largest economy in Africa and 26th globally.
Analysts are already tipping Nigeria to experience more foreign direct investments and improved economic activities with this new economic size going forward. They said investors will look the way of Nigeria because of the huge market size that has now been officially exposed.
If the Nigerian economy is growing, there will be more investments and aviation industry would benefit because there would be improved movements of people.
In 2012, Nigeria’s air passenger traffic was fourth in Africa with about 15 million after South Africa, Egypt and Morocco, respectively.
But with implementation of the aviation roadmap with its strong bias for air safety standards, comfort travels and improved airport infrastructure, the number of Nigerians travelling is likely to hit 30 million in 2015.
Currently, the Nigerian aviation industry contributes just over N200 billion to the Nigerian economy, annually, and provides more than 70,000 jobs. Though aviation authorities estimated that when the Aerotropolis Project is completed and other ad-ons in the aviation roadmap are achieved, additional 80,000 to 100,000 job opportunities would be created.
When that occurs, Federal Ministry of Aviation Projects the Aviation Industry will contribute an additional N500 billion to the Nigerian economy (GDP) directly and indirectly, annually, and will support more than 200,000 jobs in Nigeria. This will come from additional investments, construction of the infrastructure and FDI inflows into the industry.
With a rebased economy and new faith in Nigeria’s market size, the FDI could also come the way of the aviation sector.
Commenting, the Supervising Minister for Aviation, Chief Samuel Ortom, told our correspondent that this development will also impact positively on the aviation industry.”
He said: “If the new GDP will witness improved economic activities and private sector investments, then the aviation industry would also witness private sector investments. This is because as more local and foreign investments come into Nigeria following the renewed confidence in the Nigerian economy, air transport would also boom as more people would want to travel quickly and execute businesses. Thus, with improved passengers, more airlines can operate in the Nigerian market and make profit. This should attract new airlines and other investments in the aviation industry.”
He also noted that the Federal Government is encouraging private investment in the Nigerian aviation sector.
He, thus, pledged his ministry’s support to private investors who would like to invest in the Nigerian aviation industry.