Etihad plans Nigeria flights
Abu Dhabi, August 26, 2008
Etihad Airways has announced plans to start flights to Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital, and Abuja, the country’s capital city, from Abu Dhabi.
The airline will operate four services a week to the cities. A start date for the new flights has yet to be determined but the airline is likely to begin the service in March 2009.
The “triangular” flights, between Abu Dhabi, Lagos and Abuja, will be served by one of Etihad’s Airbus A330-200 aircraft which is configured to carry 22 passengers in Business class, 240 passengers in Economy and which has a cargo capacity of 14 tonnes.
The two Nigerian cities join Johannesburg, Cairo, Casablanca and Khartoum as part of Etihad’s route network in Africa. The addition of the new flights is also expected to increase bilateral trade between the UAE and Nigeria, for business travellers and freight forwarders.
James Hogan, Etihad Airways’ chief executive, said: “The launch of the first flights between Abu Dhabi and Nigeria will be a proud achievement for Etihad Airways which will continue the impressive growth of the airline’s global flight network.
“The new service will support UAE-Nigeria trade ties and also provide a frequent service for West-African based air travellers looking to visit the UAE for shopping and holidays.”
Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa with the current population of 140 million set to reach 155 million by 2010.
Lagos is Nigeria’s largest city with a population of 7.9 million residents and is the driving force behind the country’s economy, producing manufactured goods such as machinery, motor vehicles, electronic equipment and textiles.
Despite being smaller than Lagos, Abuja is the capital city of Nigeria with a growing population. – TradeArabia News Service