The Saint John Region Chamber of Commerce has launched business and community surveys to gauge consumer confidence of how to travel safely in the current environment. In addition, The Chamber has established an advisory committee to shape lobbying efforts on behalf of the Saint John Airport as the airport works to survive the financial fall-out of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As well, the group will work to establish connections with airlines and if necessary, seek government intervention to prohibit the cancellation of routes vital to our national and regional connectivity.
The group is comprised of several large and small businesses and organizations that will work to advance the voice of the Saint John Airport in government. It is in the best interests of all members, the business community and the citizens of our region to lead this initiative to ensure the Saint John Airport continues to be a viable resource for the travelling public and an economic driver for our community Our current and future growth depends on it.
Asks for both Federal and Provincial governments include:
- Provide short-term operating grants to help airports maintain financial liquidity
- Elimination of airport rent for remainder of lease
- Assist airports in meeting critical infrastructure capital expenditure needs
- Such as Airports Capital Assistance program, National Trade Corridor Fund, Fed/Prov bilateral infrastructure funding
- When will the Province eliminate domestic border restrictions? What will it take? Timelines? KPI’s?
- Access to funding to restore lost service. NB airports have lost a significant amount of routes and frequency. Airports facing a 5 year recovery to restore passenger and revenue levels to 2019 levels. Will need to market and promote Province again to air carriers.
- Access to funds for capital projects through bi-lateral Infrastructure Agreements. Airport Capital Plans have been shelved and reserves getting low. Airports facing a 5 year recovery to restore passenger and revenue levels to 2019 levels. Airports need continuous investment to meet Federal and International regulations.