FREDERICTON (GNB) – A five-year strategy, The Provincial Air Sector Strategy (2022-2027) is now in place to encourage growth in passenger air service in the province, without the closure of any existing airports.

“Our goal was to better understand New Brunswick’s air sector along with its strengths, challenges, and opportunities, with a focus on evidence-based data and analysis,” said Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Jill Green. “This strategy provides us with a roadmap for keeping our strategic aviation assets viable and encouraging growth in a meaningful and sustainable way.”

Highlights of the strategy include:

  • Existing airport infrastructure remains with no closures and no new builds.
  • Enhance collaboration that focuses on long-term, sustainable growth in air service.
  • Continue to support, when possible, infrastructure maintenance that is required for the continuous delivery of essential aviation services.

“The air transportation sector is critical to the New Brunswick economy by supporting jobs and tourism growth, enabling investment, and allowing for provincial, national and international trade,” said Green. “Enhancing air services, in particular scheduled passenger service, is key. By working collaboratively with our partners in this sector, the province will identify opportunities to improve connectivity and generate economic activity.”

The Regional Development Corporation has committed $4 million over the next four years for the Air Service Development Fund pilot project. The fund is to support the development of new routes.

A committee will be formed to study opportunities for growth in air service and to foster further collaboration among airports. The committee will be chaired by a representative from the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure and will include representatives from Opportunities New Brunswick, the Regional Development Corporation, and from the four airports which have scheduled passenger service. They are Bathurst (ZBF) Fredericton (YFC), Moncton (YQM) and Saint John (YSJ).

The committee will review submissions and submit recommendations to the government.

Key performance indicators will be used to determine the success and impact of the pilot project and decide whether it should be continued and whether the same collaborative approach should be used.