Halifax, N.S. – Halifax International Airport Authority (HIAA) today provided its support for the federal government’s Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with the European Union (EU). An agreement-in principle for this historic deal was announced by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and European Commission President José Manuel Barroso last week. Among other things, the CETA will reduce or eliminate tariffs on lobster beginning in 2015.
“This agreement between Canada and the EU is a welcomed addition to the many benefits of shipping lobster and seafood through Halifax Stanfield International Airport,” says Jerry Staples, HIAA Vice President, Air Service Marketing & Development. “We are particularly pleased to see this partnership arrangement with the EU, one of our key target markets. The economic spin-offs will have far reaching effects for our community, our province, and our region.”
The Canada-EU trade agreement will result in preferred access to one of the largest services economies in the world, worth approximately $12.1 trillion in GDP terms in 2012.
Halifax Stanfield International Airport, strategically positioned as the closest major continental North American link to the EU, processed 29.5 million kilograms of cargo in 2012.
“We have placed a high priority on developing air cargo at Halifax Stanfield,” says Staples. “The Airport Authority has invested significant resources focused on this part of our business and this positive step by the federal government will only help to further support these efforts.”
In 2010, the Airport’s multi-tenant cargo facility began operations. The 40,000 square foot facility, operated by Gateway Facilities ULC, features the largest climate-controlled space (7,000 square feet) with direct airside access north of Miami – ideal for shipping fresh lobster and seafood.
In November 2012, the main runway at Halifax Stanfield was extended to 10,500 feet. The longer runway, made possible by investments from the Airport Authority and both the federal and provincial governments, enables cargo freighters to operate throughout the year with heavier payloads.
Over the past several years, the Airport Authority has upgraded its snow and ice removal equipment to enhance winter operations, further advancing Halifax Stanfield’s high level of service and creating operational reliability and efficiencies for air carriers.
Halifax Robert L. Stanfield International Airport is Atlantic Canada’s principal full-service airport providing passengers and cargo clients with access to markets across Canada, the United States, the Caribbean Basin, and Europe. It’s the only airport in Atlantic Canada to offer Canada Customs services on a 24 hour, seven day a week basis, and U.S. preclearance. The Airport, a major economic generator valued at over $1.27 billion to the provincial economy, welcomes 3.6 million passengers annually; gives back through its Community Outreach Program and its Signature Partnership with Parker Street Food and Furniture Bank; and is an internationally recognized leader in customer service, having been rated the Best Airport in the World in its class for seven of the past ten years and is one of only 12 airports worldwide certified as Airport Service Quality Assured – an industry gold standard for service excellence.