As of September 1, 2022, Emirates will no longer operate flights to and from Nigeria. The airline was unable to withdraw its money from Nigeria, which led to the decision.
You may remember that the airline announced it will cut its frequency in Nigeria from eleven to seven by mid-August due to the $85 million that was stuck in the country.
With almost $600 million in frozen funds belonging to international airlines that cannot be repatriated since the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) could not meet airlines’ request for dollars, the reports claims that other airlines may potentially follow suit.
In accordance with BASAs, foreign airlines must charge passengers in naira and the CBN must convert the fares to dollars before they can be remitted home.
On Thursday morning, the airline Emirates released a statement saying it will cease all flights to Nigeria, with the caveat that it could reconsider the decision if the situation improved.
The statement added, “Emirates has made great efforts to commence communication with the relevant authorities for their quick assistance to help find a viable solution to our ongoing issues in repatriating cash from Nigeria.”
Unfortunately, no advancements have been made. As a result of the market’s continued decline and its negative effect on Emirates’ operational costs, the airline has made the tough decision to terminate service to and from Nigeria as of September 1, 2022. We apologize for the trouble this has caused our clients but the situation is currently out of our hands. It is our intention to assist affected clients in rescheduling their trips wherever possible.
We will, of course, reevaluate our decision if the situation with Emirates’ stalled cash in Nigeria improves in the coming days. We’re still committed to serving the Nigerian market, and our services provide vital connectivity for Nigerian tourists and traders looking to reach Dubai and the rest of our network of more than 130 locations.