MD, FAAN, George Uriesi
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) said it has commenced the repositioning of its cargo division in line with its statutory function and has elevated it to a directorate in order to explore all revenue possibilities in that area.
The objective is to boost growth, generate more revenue and keep it in tandem with the on-going restructuring of the aviation sector by the Minister of Aviation, Princess Stella Oduah.
The new directorate would spearhead the development of the cargo business which has been under-explored over the years, even though the potential was enormous, the agency said in a statement.
“The new cargo directorate will be responsible for generating a blueprint for turning the cargo business to a profitable venture as it is done globally. The directorate will also be responsible for implementing changes and monitoring the application of relevant resources to achieve result,” said the General Manager, Corporate Communications, Yakubu Dati.
He disclosed that the new initiative would involve the building of massive terminals which would have several perishable cargo warehouses and other cargo infrastructure that would help to boost the economy of the country in terms of speedy turn around and safe delivery of goods and services.
“The present cargo traffic figure for year 2011 at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport stands at about 171.6 million metric tonnes per annum, whereas Manchester Cargo Airport in the UK handles about same number at around 170 million metric tonnes cargo annually.
“The airport is already targeting about 250 million metric tonnes by year 2015 according to information from the MCA websites. The present strategy by FAAN will give room for the expansion of cargo traffic figure to about double by 2015.” Dati added.
He noted that by the time this project was realised, FAAN would have become a major player in the cargo business comparable to international airports like Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam, Frankfurt Airport in Germany and London’s Heathrow Airport.
The present restructuring of FAAN is being implemented in three phases, according to the Managing Director, George Uriesi, who remarked that the remodeling of the terminals falls under first stage; the turn-around of the financial situation constitutes the second phase of the on-going restructuring and the third is the capacity development of its human resources.