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The Airline Operators of Nigeria has said the domestic carriers in the country are being stifled by the manipulation, feasting and pushing of their finances through multiple taxes, charges and levies to the extent that the airlines are now groaning under the pressure and some are going bankrupt.
The Chairman, AON, Capt. Nogie Meggison, said domestic airlines, on the average, pay between 35 per cent and 40 per cent of the cost of a ticket as taxes and charges that come under the guise of statutory levies.
“These include five per cent ticket sales charge, five per cent cargo sales charge, five per cent Value Added Tax, passenger service charge, charter sales charge, aircraft inspection fees, simulator inspection fees, landing charges, parking charges, terminal navigational charge, en-route charge, fuel surcharge, airport space rent, electricity charges, apron pass, ramp access charges, ODC and a newly imposed registration fee, all of which are paid to government agencies,” he said.
He added that many of the taxes and charges amounted to double taxation such that any incentive seemingly provided by the government to airlines was being taken back by the agencies.
Meggison said, “The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency charges domestic airlines different kinds of navigational charges, which they should ordinarily be exempted from in line with global best practices, except in Nigeria. The implemented charges range from terminal navigational charges to en-route navigation charges, over-flight charges, clearance charges, and extension charges. Even foreign airlines don’t pay en-route charges or extension charges, which the local airlines are forced to pay.
“In spite of all these charges, the NAMA still gets 23 per cent taken from the NCAA’s five per cent Ticket Sales Charge account. Even with all these charges, many of the airports in the country do not have runway lights and navigational landing aids.”