The Nigeria aviation Industry has lost over N63 billion to the ravaging effects of COVID-19, a report by the Nigeria Ministry of Aviation has revealed.

Describing the air transport value chain as the hardest hit to the deadly virus, the report said over 90 percent of operations and activities were adversely affected resulting in monthly losses valued at N21 billion.

The report sighted by The Nation indicated that the ravaging effects of the virus in the sector has forced government  to consider working out a recovery plan aimed at providing financial support where necessary to sustain air connectivity for passenger operations and cargo  flights.

Besides, the financial support proposed for the industry, the report indicated that the government is rejigging its plans to fast track the establishment of a private sector driven national carrier, which is expected to  generate significant revenue and contribute to Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

The project is expected to create activity in the wider economy for suppliers, importers, exporters and manufacturers.

“The objective and guiding principles is to save existing aviation industry organisations and jobs, through a targeted stimulus package as well as fast-track the establishment of a private sector driven national carrier.

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“There is need to strengthen the aviation sector so that it survives and creates job opportunities and supports general economic activity including transport logistics.

“The project elements will include extend grant support, including pay roll support to the aviation industry including airlines, handlers, caterers and related services,” the report said.

According to experts familiar with the matter, the report proposed the provision of single digit soft loans, with long-term repayment plan, deferred payment of taxes and filing dates.

The report put an estimated N27 billion as a bailout package for the sector, which should be delivered within 12 months.