The federal government says that Nigeria Air will commence operations with three wet-leased aircraft.
Wet-lease is an arrangement covering the hire of an aircraft, including the provision of a flight crew and sometimes fuel.
On Wednesday, the federal executive council approved April 2022 as the take-off date of the airline.
Hadi Sirika, minister of aviation, disclosed this during a press briefing yesterday in Abuja.
Sirika said leasing would be the arrangement pending when the company ordered new planes.
He added that it would take about three to five years to get an ordered aircraft delivered.
“They will start with wet-leased aircraft and that’s how 90 percent of airlines in the world would have started,” he said.
“So they will start with a wet-lease of three aircraft and then continue to expand, place orders and then get deliveries.”
Sirika stressed that the federal government would not manage the carrier, rather investors in the carrier would run the business.
Sirika further announced that from the start of next week, the ministry would send out request for proposals to investors who are keen on owning shares in the proposed national carrier, as talks with prospective investors was ongoing.
“Nigeria Air would be quoted on the stock exchange and Nigerians would be allowed to buy shares in the airline.
“We will release what is called Request for Proposals very soon, I believe next week. And this Request for Proposals will describe what and what we are asking for,” he said.
“You will now go and send us a document that you are proposing to partner us and this is what you are giving us.
“Then we will sit down, evaluate, discuss and choose a strategic partner or partners for this airline.
“So Request for Proposals are going out next week and by the grace of God we will continue to pursue that and people will show up.”