Regional Air Transportation Initiative (RATI) funding will help maintain regional connectivity and jobs
KELOWNA, BC, Feb. 22, 2022 /CNW/ – In a country as large as Canada, air connectivity is critical to the prosperity of all Canadians. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted regional air transportation ecosystems, affecting economies, communities and businesses across the country.
The Government of Canada’s Regional Air Transportation Initiative (RATI), launched in March 2021, is fostering access to air transportation and supporting regional ecosystems.
Regional air ecosystem to benefit from funding
Today, the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada, announced RATI funding of over $18.8 million in federal support for 11 airports and two air carriers in B.C.
Regional airports and carriers provide a vital service, providing commercial flight access, supporting critical supply chains and promoting economic growth. They connect patients to needed medical care and enable essential work travel. They provide important emergency services and cargo operations to supply businesses and frontline workers.
This funding will ensure airports and carriers can continue essential routine maintenance and facility operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. It will help maintain employment and restore growth in the region as we work to build back from the pandemic.
Regional air transportation is key to the economic development of communities and businesses across Canada. This investment shows the Government of Canada’s commitment to supporting economic development across the country and fostering sustainable, inclusive growth for all.
“Air transportation is essential to community well-being and regional economic development. Today’s announcement will not only enhance airport safety and support our essential services but will also create jobs that British Columbians can rely on and bolster regional growth as we recover from the effects of the pandemic.”
– The Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada
“It is essential that different levels of government partner to stimulate the economy as we recover from COVID-19. The Kelowna International Airport plays a critical role in supporting economic development in Kelowna and the region.”
– Mayor Basran, City of Kelowna
“Thank you to the federal government for providing funding to these regional airports and airlines in B.C. This funding is critical to maintain and rebuild connectivity throughout Canada.”
– Monette Pasher, Interim President, Canadian Airports Council
“In my role as Airports Council International – North America Chair, I am working with my colleagues across North America as our industry recovers from COVID-19. Investments in aviation, such as the one being made by the federal government today, not only support the recovery of these airports and airlines, but also their surrounding communities.”
– Sam Samaddar, Director, Kelowna International Airport
Projects being funded:
|Stikine Airport Society-Dease Lake Airport||Dease Lake||$328,322|
|Regional District of Alberni-Clayoquot-Tofino / Long Beach Airport||Tofino||$328,322|
|City of Abbotsford-Abbotsford International Airport||Abbotsford||$2,320,000|
|Kelowna International Airport||Kelowna||$3,261,330|
|Town of Smithers-Smithers Regional Airport||Smithers||$505,616|
|City of Williams Lake-Williams Lake Regional Airport||Williams Lake||$130,000|
|Pacific Coastal Airlines Limited||Richmond||$5,098,602|
|Central Mountain Air Ltd., 580741 British Columbia Ltd.||Smithers||$5,000,000|
|The City of Castlegar-West Kootenay Regional Airport||Castlegar||$524,200|
|The Corporation of the City of Cranbrook-Canadian Rockies International Airport||Cranbrook||$609,584|
|Northern Rockies Regional Municipality-Northern Rockies Regional Airport||Fort Nelson||$328,322|
|Cariboo Regional District-Cariboo Regional Airport||Anahim Lake||$54,720|
|City of Quesnel-Quesnel Regional Airport||Quesnel||$326,518|
- The Regional Air Transportation Initiative (RATI) has a national budget of $206 million.
- The initiative supports regional air ecosystems—which include regional air carriers and airports, as well as small and medium-sized enterprises and non-profit organizations—in developing and implementing enhanced services for improved regional connectivity.
- It is delivered by regional development agencies across Canada, including Pacific Economic Development Canada, the new regional development agency dedicated to British Columbia.
- RATI complements measures implemented by Transport Canada.