Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the Company, Mr. Olatokunbo Fagbemi, while speaking at Iftar dinner organised for Turkish Airlines stakeholders in Lagos, said the partnership is about ensuring that NAHCO does things in such a way that it is easy for Turkish Airlines to serve the clients and the shippers better and it is easy for the shippers to understand the activities of Turkish Airlines.
Fagbemi explained that with this partnership, imports and exports of cargoes would be seamless with NAHCO being the go-between of the exporters, shippers and freight forwarders.
She explained that NAHCO had been in business with Turkish Airline since 2006 and that the solidification of this enterprise is because Turkish Airline is getting into some automation in its new terminal and NAHCO also has started a transformation process that would continue for the next five years. She explained that this being the case, there is the need for all stakeholders to key into the transformation agenda with regards cargo to imports and exports.
On what NAHCO is doing to ensure export of cargo meets European Union standards, Fagbemi said since the beginning of the year, the Company has consistently engaged all its stakeholders and clients on the processes goods must go through to meet EU’s standard.
She stated, “We sometimes call the airlines and the shippers for us to ensure that this process is in line with the EU standard. The airlines and the shippers listen to each other. In Nigeria, there are lots of opportunities for exports that are not yet tapped. If an airline is coming with freighters, how much of the freighter’s space is being filled? The people that are in the room for this event are some of the people that will influence it to be filled. So, it is nice to have these engagements so we can benefit as a country. We are looking at how the country can benefit.”
According to her, Nigeria is blessed with lots of agricultural products that can be exported, but a lot of the produce is being destroyed and that is because the exporters do not understand some of the things that they needed to do. So, the engagement with stakeholders is just the beginning of several more that at the end of the day, the full benefits of export cargo can be tapped.
Fagbemi disclosed that imports and exports of cargo in the first half of 2019 has increased, adding that there is a market for agricultural produce in Nigeria but there are restrictions; and that is why it is important that shippers understand these restrictions and manage them so that their goods would not be returned.