Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has stated that the commencement of Turkish Airlines flights to the Port Harcourt International Airport will lead to greater economic development for the state.
He said this during a ceremony marking the maiden flight of Turkish Airlines to Port Harcourt International Airport on Tuesday. The Governor stated that Rivers State Government was ready to partner with FAAN for more airlines to operate International flights from the state.
He said: “We are happy that Turkish Airlines is now operating from the Port Harcourt International Airport. This will positively impact the economy of the State.
“Outside Lagos and Abuja, Port Harcourt International Airport should be the next destination for international flights and other business opportunities. The Rivers State Government is willing to partner with key stakeholders to ensure that more Airlines operate from the state”.
He said Rivers State has great economic opportunities that will be beneficial to investors. He noted that the economy of the state can sustain itself .
The Governor reiterated his approval for the dualisation of the road leading to the Port Harcourt International Airport, saying that engineers of the State Ministry of Works took road measurements on Tuesday.
Senior Vice President of Turkish Airlines, Mr Karem Sarp said that the Port Harcourt route is the 324 destination of the Airline in 124 countries. He informed that it is the 57th destination in Africa.
He said that Turkish Airlines is committed to improving social and economic connections in different parts of the world.
“We are recognised for our unique flight services. We will continue to grow and this is an important destination “, he said.
He said that the Port Harcourt route will link India, United States, China and other important global destinations.
Managing Director of Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria, FAAN, Group Captain Usman Sadiq said that the Port Harcourt International Airport deserves more flights. He said FAAN will continue to work towards more flights for the state.
Nigerian Ambassador to Turkey, Mr Audu Paragalda said the new destination will improve relations between Turkey and Nigeria.
The General Manager of Turkish Airlines Lagos/Port Harcourt, Mr Yunus Ozbek thanked the Rivers State Government and FAAN for creating the opportunity for Turkish Airlines to operate from Port Harcourt. He assured that the Airlines will live up to the expectations of the people.
The maiden flight was welcomed with a celebration at the airport coupled with an exchange of gifts between the Rivers State Government and the management of Turkish Airlines.