CHARLO (GNB) – The provincial government is investing $450,000 to explore business development opportunities for the Charlo Airport.

“Your government understands what matters most to New Brunswickers,” said Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Minister Donald Arseneault, who is also the minister responsible for the Regional Development Corporation. “New Brunswickers want their government to make investments to help the economy and also want us to make investments that will improve their quality of life. Our investment in this key regional infrastructure is vital for public safety, health care and economic development opportunities.”

The funding will be used over a three-year period to explore new business opportunities and for hiring a chief executive officer for the airport. Through the Restigouche Regional Service Commission, eight municipalities and local service districts will also contribute to the project with matching funds.

“This partnership with the province and our local communities will allow us to develop and grow opportunities for the Charlo regional airport, leading us to self-sustainability,” said Dave Montgomery, chairman of the Charlo Regional Airport Authority.

The airport serves a large portion of northern New Brunswick and the south shore of Quebec's Gaspé Peninsula. The facility features an 1,800-metre (6,000-foot) runway capable of accommodating aircraft as large as corporate and mid-sized jets.