British Airways is evaluating its routes to Nigeria, adding to aviation-industry pressure on the government as sister carrier Iberia and U.S. competitor United Airlines halt flights to the oil-based market as traffic stutters and currency controls delay access to revenue.
The U.K. carrier is struggling to repatriate its share of the $575 million that Nigeria currently owes to airlines globally from tickets sold in the West African nation, said Kola Olayinka, country manager for British Airways’ and Iberia’s parent company, IAG SA.
Madrid-based Iberia halted flights on May 12 to Lagos, Nigeria’s biggest city, “due to very difficult operating circumstances and dwindling passenger numbers,” he said in an e-mailed response to questions.
International Air Transport Association Chief Executive Officer Tony Tyler met with Nigerian Vice President Yemi Osinbajo this week, the lobby group said in a statement Wednesday that warned that Lagos could lose its role as a hub to West Africa.
United Airlines informed employees on Wednesday that it would end flights from the U.S. to Nigeria on June 30 because of a lack of demand and difficulty in collecting payments.