FIFO operator Alliance Airlines has cut the ribbon on its new $60 million maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facility at Rockhampton Airport.
The three-bay hangar will allow Alliance to bring maintenance back on-shore for its fleet of more than 70 aircraft, replacing contracts in Slovakia and the UK and creating roughly 100 skilled aviation jobs, as well as supporting 16 new traineeships and apprenticeships.
The site, made possible by a $21 million Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility loan as well as $25 million from the Federal Government and $2 million from Rockhampton Council, is anticipated to add $30 million per year to the Rockhampton economy.
“Economic modelling shows that this facility is expected to directly boost the Queensland economy by almost $195 million over the next 10 years,” said Queensland Treasurer Cameron Dick.
“Facilities such as these are a catalyst for further regional development by attracting specialty high value freight and logistics suppliers and a range of aeronautical support companies to the region.
“The commitment of Alliance to Rockhampton shows that Queensland has the capabilities to enhance their operations and further consolidates our growing reputation in the multi-billion-dollar global aviation industry.”
According to Alliance managing director Scott McMillan, when fully operational, the facility can bring jobs back from overseas to the airline’s home soil in Queensland.
“Alliance Airlines sees Rockhampton as a key hub for our operations, and this facility solidifies our long-term commitment to the region,” he said.
“We are absolutely confident that this significant investment in aviation will attract other industry participants to invest here in Rockhampton.
“We can’t wait for our fleet to continue to soar thanks to this joint collaboration with Federal, State and Local Government.”
Alliance’s fleet is set to expand to 104 with the addition of 30 more Embraer E190s. The airline operates around 40 Fokker 70 and 100 aircraft, as well as 33 existing E-Jets.