A total of 13 airport consortia, comprising local and foreign companies, have submitted bids to be prequalified for the planned concession of four Nigerian international airports, The PUNCH has learnt.
This came as the Independent Concession and Regulatory Commission last week began the evaluation of the applications submitted by the companies seeking to be pre-qualified for the airport concession process.
The Federal Government had on October 15, 2021 closed the Request for Qualifications for the concession of four international airports, namely the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos; the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja; Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano; and the Port Harcourt International Airport.
The spokesperson for the ICRC, Mrs Manji Yarling, in an exclusive interview with The PUNCH on Friday, disclosed that 13 companies submitted their RFQs before the closure of the exercise on October 25.
She declined to give further details, including the names of the local and foreign companies that submitted RFQs for the concession.
Yarling referred our correspondent to the Federal Ministry of Aviation for further details.
However, the Director of Communications, Federal Ministry of Aviation, Mr James Odaudu, said the ministry could not speak on the ongoing concession process, saying the transaction advisers for the concession would give more details at the appropriate time.
Also, Maevis Nigeria Limited, a former concessionaire with the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, was also among the bidders.
Others, according to findings, include operators of the Singapore’s Changi Airport, operators of France’s Charles de Gaulle Airport, and operators of Ethiopia’s Airport.
Impeccable sources close to the development said local companies that applied for the concession formed consortia with foreign partners while global reputable airport managers, which also submitted their RFQs, formed alliances with some local partners in order to meet the local content requirement of the Federal Government.
“So far, there are notable and globally reputable airport companies and consortia which have applied for the RFQs. Some of the foreign companies formed consortia with local companies to meet the local content requirement while local companies have foreign technical partners,” an official close to the development told our correspondent on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to speak on the matter.
Meanwhile, the ICRC has begun the evaluation of the RFQs, according to its spokesperson, Yarling.
She said the evaluation began on Wednesday but did not disclose how long it would last.
Findings by The PUNCH revealed that the ICRC was established to superintend and regulate public-private partnership endeavours of the Federal Government aimed at addressing Nigeria’s physical infrastructure deficit, which hampers economic development.
The strategic objective of the ICRC is to accelerate investment in national infrastructure through private sector funding by enabling the Federal Government and its ministries, departments, and agencies to establish and implement effective PPPs.
The Federal Government had in August opened the bidding process for the concession of the four major international airport terminals in the country.
It also said the Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt and Kano airports would be on concession for a minimum of 20 to 30 years.
The Ministry of Aviation said the concession applied to the non-aeronautic assets of the airports located in the passenger and cargo terminals.
It said these comprised the assets from the entry door of the airport to the point of embarking and disembarking from an aircraft to the exit doors.
The ministry explained that this space commonly referred to as the passenger terminal comprised retail spaces, waiting and seating areas, airport and airline lounges, baggage collection, check-in counters as well as administrative offices.
It added that the cargo terminals comprised the facilities between the point of entry and up to loading and off-loading points, including administrative offices within said facilities.
The government has assured FAAN workers that none of them would lose their jobs, but aviation unions have continued to kick against the proposed concession.