Harold Demuren, former Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, said in a statement to the press, following BASA`s renegotiations between Nigeria and Qatar in 2016, that the agreement reached by the Qatar-designated airline, which had seven frequencies to Nigeria at the time, gave more entry points to the country. , thus exacerbating the problems of national airlines. His argument was that the country did not have a local airline capable of competing with Qatar Airways, which made the agreement unilateral, despite the confidence of Finance Minister Kemi Adeosun, that signing the agreement would result in much more investment and business opportunities between Qatar and Nigeria. Caption: Map of bilateral air services agreements between members of the World Trade Organization. Courtesy Projectors Air Services Agreement, World Trade Organization, 2007 “I think it`s a great service, keep up the good work.” Since the use of aircraft within the borders of a single country makes no economic sense, it has become necessary for countries to find a way to expand their areas of exploitation. This has led to several agreements between two countries in the form of bilateral air services agreements. One of the first air agreements after World War II was the Bermuda Agreement. This agreement was signed in 1946 by the United States of America and the United Kingdom. The characteristics of the Bermuda Agreement became models for the many such agreements that were to follow (Kasper 1988)3. A bilateral air services agreement is reached between two states parties, which liberalizes commercial civil aviation services between these countries. Bilateral air services agreements allow designated airlines in these countries to operate commercial flights covering passenger and cargo transport between the two countries.
In addition, they generally regulate the frequency and capacity of air services between countries, pricing and other commercial aspects. At a press conference in January 2017, the Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority revealed that Nigeria concluded bilateral air transport agreements with 90 countries in December 2016. It is very important to note, however, that only about 30 of these agreements are active. Air Services Agreements (ASAs) are formal contracts between countries – Memorandums of Understanding (Memorandum of Understanding) and formal diplomatic notes. It is not mandatory to have an ASA for the operation of international services, but cases where contract-free services exist are rare.