Minister of Aviation Hadi Sirika, has said that Nigeria will double the number of its airports before the end of 2023. The West African country currently has thirty-one airports, twenty-six of which are operated by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN). Five are international airports.
Mr Sirika said this during the public presentation of the 2021 budget proposal organised by the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning.
He said, “We understood the principles and the importance of air connectivity and it is a very important sector. It boosts our economy and we believe investment in this sector will do well for our economy.
“Before the end of 2023, we would have doubled the number of airports in Nigeria. We understand the importance of aviation infrastructure as a critical component for the working of our economy and our national security assets.”
Mr Sirika said the aviation industry was the fastest growing sector in the country and the current administration had developed a roadmap to improve civil aviation and air transportation in general.
The 2021 budget is projected at N13.08 trillion, which is 21 per cent higher than the revised 2020 budget of N10.8 trillion. The Ministry of Aviation has budgeted N89.97 billion as capital expenditure for 2021.
The ministry also plans to spend N5 billion for safety and security-critical projects and airport certification nationwide and N14 billion for construction of the second runway at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.
The ministry has also proposed N1.6 billion for the extension and asphalt overlay of Murtala Muhammed International Airport runway, Lagos; N1 billion for the construction of a new terminal building in Enugu; and N1 billion for the construction of an airstrip in Abeokuta.