Kenya asks Nigeria, Ethiopia to repatriate earnings


The Kenyan authorities are in talks with their Nigerian and Ethiopian counterparts to repatriate tens of millions of dollars belonging to national carrier Kenya Airways. The money is stuck in those countries owing to a foreign currency shortage.

Kenya Airways says its business has suffered the impact of high fuel prices and the shortage of dollars in Lagos and Addis Ababa, leading to a loss of $82m (£70m) in the first six months of this year.

But its officials declined to disclose how much it is unable to repatriate from the two countries.

The airline says government officials are exploring diplomatic channels to find a solution.

Meanwhile, the International Air Transport Association, IATA, has said up to $464m belonging to foreign carriers is stuck in Nigeria.

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Earlier this month, Dubai-based Emirates Group said it would suspend all flights to Nigeria from September, over the dollar issue.

Foreign airlines are required to sell their services in host countries using the local currency, which is later converted to US dollars and repatriated to the airline’s home country.

A shortage of foreign currency therefore makes it hard for airlines to withdraw their earnings.

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