Nigeria gets first real FBO with new Lagos facility

 - August 28, 2011, 11:15 AM

Nigeria now has what claims to be the West African country’s first purpose-built FBO, with the recent opening of the EAN Jet Centre at Murtala Muhammed International Airport. The 160,000-sq-ft facility was built by local company Evergreen Apple Nigeria and offers business aircraft operators a secure and private alternative to the airport’s main terminal.

The FBO includes a VIP lounge, a crew lounge and flight planning office, as well as conference facilities and a hangar. Passengers and crew can complete customs and immigration procedures in the same building at any hour. The new facility also features a restaurant, which can provide in-flight catering.

Through sister company Esperanza Air, Evergreen is looking to expand business aircraft maintenance infrastructure at Lagos, since most operators in the region currently have no choice but to go to Europe or South Africa for support. The new Lagos FBO already employs staff capable of handling line maintenance tasks on Gulfstreams, Learjets, Citations and Hawker Beechcraft aircraft.

Evergreen is negotiating with Lagos airport officials to secure a dedicated section of the ramp exclusively for general aviation use. It also wants to become more involved in helping operators to secure over-flight and landing permits for Nigeria and other African countries.

Growth in Southeast Africa Too

Meanwhile in Southeast Africa, Tanzania-based flight handling provider Equity Aviation has opened a new base in the capital of neighboring Mozambique. The operation at Maputo International Airport is intended to support growing numbers of flights heading for Mozambique’s resorts.

Equity Aviation managing director Rosemary Kacungira told AIN that she is pressuring Tanzania officials to stop stalling over plans to build a new passenger terminal at the country’s Dar-es-Salaam International Airport to provide better facilities for growing numbers of business and private aircraft. Her company also provides handling support on the island of Zanzibar and at Mwanza (close to Lake Victoria). It has representation in Kenya, Uganda, Burundi and Rwanda.