Cargo volumes at Halifax Stanfield International Airport grew 21.4 per cent in the first quarter of 2017 due to new direct flights to China transporting lobsters, Halifax International Airport Authority director for cargo & real estate development, Glen Boone (pictured) explains.
This follows a record year in 2016 with 4.1 per cent growth to 33,330 tonnes, and demand for lobster and seafood continues to grow, especially to Asia.
Boone believes Halifax is poised to keep growing, as demand for Nova Scotia seafood remains strong from China.
He says: “Factors contributing to this positive outlook include: our lower Canadian dollar (vs. US) and the removal of an eight per cent duty on live lobster in the EU following the ratification of CETA allows our exports to be very competitive.”
China and Asia has surpassed traditional markets, Boone explains: “For many years the Benelux region was our primary export market for our live lobster, however, in recent years that market has been surpassed by the demand for the Nova Scotia delicacy to Asia and China.”
The airport authority has invested in new facilities including a new 17,000 metre apron located near Gateway Facilities, a cargo storage facility housing 40,000 square feet of cargo space, 7,000 is temperature controlled.
Boone says: “The addition of the new apron improves turnaround time and makes Halifax Stanfield more attractive to cargo operators who are interested in doing business in Nova Scotia and not only supports our seafood industry, it provides a positive impact to our provincial economy.”
Boone sees Canada’s openness to trade as another advantage, saying: “Canada’s free trade agreement with South Korea that came into effect Jan 01, 2015 is already have positive effects for both countries. CETA will be the next measuring stick.”