In a move aimed at enhancing revenue generation and regulating airspace activities, the Nigerian government has granted the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) the right to collect levies on helicopter landings.

Under the new directive, helicopter operators will be required to pay landing fees to NAMA for every landing made within Nigerian airspace. These levies will contribute to the maintenance and improvement of aviation facilities, including air traffic control systems and navigational aids.

As such, the government said it had given NAEBI Dynamic Concepts Limited the exclusive rights to collect helicopter landing levies for federal agencies.

This was contained in a statement signed by the Head, of Press and Public Affairs of the Ministry of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Odutayo Oluseyi,

According to the statement, having discovered a lacuna in the lower airspace where helicopter operations are dominant, the FG directed NAMA to live up to her responsibilities to enable them to generate enough resources to sustain their aeronautical architecture, enhance security and surveillance, and improve the overall quality of helicopter operations in Nigeria.

The statement partly reads,” The Federal Government of Nigeria has granted NAEBI Dynamic Concepts Limited exclusive rights to collect helicopter landing levies in line with the MoU between NAEBI Concept and NAMA (focal agency), Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria and the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority.

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“It is instructive to note that NAMA under the Act as amended in 2022, is empowered to collect aeronautical revenues in both the upper and lower airspace to support her self-sustainability. However, over the years, NAMA has predominantly relied on the upper airspace for its revenue generation.

We are confident that this move will improve capacity, efficiency, safety, and security, and attract more investment in the aviation industry. We encourage all stakeholders to be committed to this laudable initiative that has followed due processes and procedures, and should embrace the new normal.”

The ministry further said it recognises the importance of helicopter operations in Nigeria’s aviation industry and is committed to implementing international best practices in helicopter operations through NAMA.

Oluseyi further stated, “The introduction of helicopter landing levies, which is in line with international best practices to enhance the quality of helicopter operations, is a cost recovery measure.

“Helicopter landing levies are commonplace in countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, India, and various regions worldwide. For instance, Tallahassee International Airport in Florida began implementing helicopter landing levies under Vector Airport Systems since October 1, 2022. Helicopter landing levies are common across airfields in the United Kingdom, ranging from major commercial ones to small general aviation fields. Typically, helicopter levies match or exceed those for fixed-wing aircraft, varying based on factors like locations and services provided.”

This decision, by the Ministry of Aviation, comes as part of efforts to bolster the country’s aviation sector and ensure sustainable funding for air navigation infrastructure and services.