Arik Air has described Nigeria’s attainment of the United States’ Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) certification, known as Category 1.

Arik Air, Nigeria and West Africa’s leading commercial carrier has described Nigeria’s attainment of the United States’ Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) certification, known as Category 1, as a welcome development and one that will boost its Lagos-New York JFK operations.
 
The airline’s Deputy Executive Vice President, Mr. Chris Ndulue said in Lagos at the weekend that “it has been a long wait for the certification which will enable Arik Air, presently the only Nigerian carrier flying direct to US, to use Nigerian registered aircraft and fly Nigerian crew to the US.”
 
Arik Air’s Airbus A340-500 aircraft being used on the Lagos-New York JFK route carries a foreign registration number and is operated by Hi-Fly of Portugal. This has been the situation since November 29, 2009 when Arik Air started flying direct to the US.
 
“We expect that Nigerian pilots will benefit from this new dispensation as some of them will have to go on training to upgrade and fly our flagship aircraft,” Mr. Ndulue said.
 
He thanked the American government, the Federal government of Nigeria and particularly the Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Dr. Harold Demuren for their consistent support and utmost cooperation during the entire process.
 
Arik Air’s Senior Vice President Commercials, Mr. Suraj Sundaram stressed: “Arik Air is pleased to have played a significant role in the process leading to the award of the US Category 1 Status. Arik Air is the first and only Nigerian carrier to be issued the new Air Operator Certificate by the NCAA having met the Federal Government’s requirement of the new Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulation.”
 
This recertification process by NCAA, supervised by FAA and Department of Transport, United States of America, sets a new level of compliance with regards to international safety, security and quality standards.
 
Arik Air is West Africa’s leading commercial airline. It now operates a fleet of 26 state-of-the art regional, medium haul and long haul aircraft. The airline currently serves 22 airports across Nigeria as well as Accra (Ghana), Banjul (Gambia), Cotonou (Benin), Dakar (Senegal), Freetown (Sierra Leone), Monrovia (Liberia), London Heathrow (UK), Johannesburg (South Africa) and New York JFK (USA).

The airline currently operates over 150 flights daily from its hubs in Lagos and Abuja.