Advanced Education, Skills and Labour
Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation
April 15, 2019

Ministers Announce Plans to Expand Provincial Aerospace Industry and Release Economic Growth Report

The Honourable Tom Osborne, Minister of Finance and President of Treasury Board, the Honourable Christopher Mitchelmore, Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation and the Honourable Bernard Davis, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour, today announced initiatives aimed at taking advantage of growing opportunities in the global aerospace industry for Newfoundland and Labrador.

As part of The Way Forward, the Provincial Government contracted McKinsey and Company (McKinsey) to provide global insights on areas of longer-term economic potential for Newfoundland and Labrador. As part of this work, McKinsey highlighted an opportunity to attract additional maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) capacity to the province. The report endorsed exploring opportunities for North American MRO providers to establish highly efficient greenfield operations in the province, with access to both European and North American hubs or for major overseas MRO players to expand their North American footprint.

The Provincial Government will provide $200,000 for a feasibility study to explore opportunities for additional MRO operations for heavy checks of commercial aircraft.

In addition, the Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board has approved a proposal from the aerospace industry to provincially designate Aircraft Maintenance Engineer as a new, voluntary apprenticeship trade. Workers with these skills are in high demand throughout the province and across the country. Newfoundland and Labrador is one of the first provinces to respond to aerospace industry demand to designate this trade, which will increase interest and awareness in College of the North Atlantic’s Aircraft Maintenance Engineer programming.

The Economic Growth Report PDF icon delivered by McKinsey identified 12 opportunities for economic growth across three categories:

  • High-potential sectors, including ocean technology, aquaculture and fisheries, tourism, offshore oil and mining;
  • Targeted opportunities, including aerospace, agriculture, forestry and international education; and
  • Cross-cutting enablers, including investment attraction, education, skills and workforce development and digitalization.

McKinsey has forecasted that the 12 opportunities identified have the potential to generate an incremental increase in GDP of between $5 billion and $12 billion and between 27,000 and 30,000 new jobs. The report provides a global perspective on work completed to date under The Way Forward and includes recommendations for each priority sector to maximize growth opportunities.

Budget 2019 will include further initiatives informed by the McKinsey and Company report and continuing engagement with local industry, which further build on government’s Way Forward commitment to develop a stronger economic foundation.

“Through The Way Forward, we have partnered successfully with large industry and small businesses to create new opportunities for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians. McKinsey and Company have provided a global perspective on our work to date, and have identified areas of focus where we can maximize our impact in the years to come. With this perspective, we will continue to focus on business development and job growth for current and future generations.”
Honourable Tom Osborne
Minister of Finance and President of Treasury Board

“Our support for a feasibility study will explore opportunities for additional maintenance, repair and overhaul operations for heavy checks of commercial aircraft. Implementing this recommendation from the McKinsey Report is part of the Provincial Government’s effort to explore all opportunities in aerospace, to further economic growth from a global perspective.”
Honourable Christopher Mitchelmore
Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation

“Creating jobs for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians is the foundation of improving our economy and building an even brighter future for the province. Aircraft Maintenance Engineers are in high demand here and across the country. Today’s announcement represents our government’s commitment to continue working with the aerospace industry to strengthen the province’s position as a leader in this growing sector.”
Honourable Bernard Davis
Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour

“We are pleased to see that the Provincial Government is moving to help the aerospace industry scale, grow and advance our local companies. With the challenges our industry faces with workforce development and the shortage of labour, coupled with the growing MRO market, this commitment supports our mission to create the climate for growth in Newfoundland and Labrador on both the domestic and world stage.”
Jody Fancey
NL Provincial Director, Atlantic Canada Aerospace and Defence Association

“PAL welcomes this investment in the future of MRO operations and the designation of Aircraft Maintenance Engineer as a new, voluntary apprenticeship trade. We know first hand the opportunities in aviation for Newfoundland and Labrador and we are excited for the future of our industry in this province.”

Calvin Ash
Chief Operating Officer, PAL Aerospace

“It's very encouraging to see the province recognize the opportunities and growth potential for modification repair, overhaul and training in this sector. There is a lot going on at EVAS Air, a leader in the provincial aerospace industry, and there are huge opportunities to create employment for Gander and Newfoundland and Labrador.”
Pat White
President and CEO, EVAS Air

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Learn more
Economic Growth Strategy for Newfoundland and Labrador PDF icon

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2019 04 15                              12:50 p.m.