70-year-old New Zealand planemaker is insolvent

written by Adam Thorn | February 16, 2021
A Pacific Aerospace Super-Pac XL

A 70-year-old New Zealand planemaker has had its Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) certificates suspended after declaring it’s now insolvent, according to reports.

Pacific Aerospace, which employs 100 people in Hamilton on the North Island, manufactures aircraft popular for skydiving and the aerial application of fertiliser.

Significantly, the CAA said last week that its aircraft would be able to fly despite what it called the business’ “financial distress”.

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CAA deputy chief executive aviation safety Dean Winter said, “The CAA was informed on Wednesday [10 February] about PAL’s financial status and since then we’ve been working through what the implications are for PAL aircraft operating in New Zealand and around the world.

“These certificates require the organisation to be in a financial position to comply with all their safety requirements and this is sadly no longer the case for PAL.”

Pacific Aerospace has produced more than 600 aircraft and its history dates back to WWII when a facility was established at Hamilton Airport by the US military, which has since evolved from maintenance to modification to aircraft kit, design and manufacture.

Its aircraft include the Super-Pac XL, pictured.

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