The Ogun State government has reiterated that the ongoing Gateway Cargo Airport will be viable when completed.
The new cargo airport is scheduled to launch its first flight by December this year, but fears have been expressed in the aviation sector about the viability of new airports springing up in many states across the country.
This is more so when many older airports belonging to both the federal and state governments are lying idle with little flights.
But the state government said that the new cargo airport, apart from being a project with great future prospect, is also going to be viable because of its location and the many facilities planned around it as an aerotropolis.
Ogun State Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Engr. Ade Akinsanya, who spoke on the project at the weekend, said that its viability was not in doubt as the entire surroundings would be a hub for activities in all spheres.
The airport is almost 80 percent completed. A deal has been reached with African Development Bank, AfDB, to site an agro testing firm at Sagamu to service the airport.
Akinsanya noted that the testing facility will ensure exportation of more agricultural products from Nigeria, adding that for now, because of lack of certification, some of these products cannot be exported to other countries.
In addition, most of the cargoes going into the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA, from the hinterland, especially from some states in the South-West will be diverted to the new cargo airport, because of the difficulty in reaching Lagos due to traffic congestion, he added.
According to him, the cargo airport can be accessed through Abeokuta-Sagamu, Lagos-Ibadan, Lagos- Ore-Benin and Lagos-Epe roads, which makes its location unique.
The airport has been described as the first of its kind and the fastest to be built in Nigeria. It was conceived 10 years ago by the administration of former Governor Gbenga Daniel.
But, its actual construction was started by the Dapo Abiodun administration last year.
Apart from been centre for cargo, the airport will also run passenger flights with many airlines already indicating interest.
The state government also expects the airport to further open up the Sagamu Interchange area as well as the stretch between the interchange to Lagos on the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, which is already opening up as an industrial hub, with the siting of many industries.