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PAL Aerospace creating jobs with $3M in provincial funding

Premier Dwight Ball answers questions from the media following an announcement of $3 million in provincial funding toward PAL Aerospace’s Force Multipler project. At the premier’s left are PAL Group CEO Brian Chafe, Atlantic Canada Aerospace and Defence Association provincial director Jim House, Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Technology Industries CEO Ron Taylor and Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation Christopher Mitchelmore.
Premier Dwight Ball answers questions from the media following an announcement of $3 million in provincial funding toward PAL Aerospace’s Force Multipler project. At the premier’s left are PAL Group CEO Brian Chafe, Atlantic Canada Aerospace and Defence Association provincial director Jim House, Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Technology Industries CEO Ron Taylor and Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation Christopher Mitchelmore.

PAL Aerospace will create 150 new jobs thanks to a funding partnership with the provincial government.

In a further effort to diversify the province’s economy, Premier Dwight Ball’s Liberals announced on Wednesday that the diversified international aerospace and defence company would receive a $2.25-million grant over two fiscal years to support its Force Multiplier project.

The province will forgive the grant amount if PAL is able to hit an employment target of 150 person years of employment over a five-year period.

PAL will also benefit from another $750,000 in non-repayable funds through the province’s Research and Development Corp.

“We started with the agriculture industry and the aquaculture industry and now we’re moving into the tech sector,” said Ball.

“We feel there’s some tremendous opportunity with all the young people we have in our province and, especially working with companies like PAL, to create employment for those young, energetic Newfoundlanders and Labradorians looking for a place to work and stay home.”

The Force Multiplier project involves modifying existing Dash-8 aircraft to be equipped with intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance components and made available for lease to customers both in Canada and around the world.

The aircrafts will be able to swap out components as desired or required by the lessee.

“We know there’s a demand for that out there globally right now, so we wanted to make sure PAL Aerospace is positioned with this current Dash-8,” stated Ball.

“There are opportunities right here in Newfoundland and Labrador, there’s lots of opportunities nationally, but globally is really the big market here.”

PAL expects to have the first aircraft by November and will debut it at the Dubai Airshow, where it will serve as the first occasion to be a marketing tool for the company’s technological capabilities.

Ball suggested it’s also an opportunity to market the province and its burgeoning tech sector.
“We’re keenly interested in making sure that we support them in this particular marketing tool that they can take and showcase around the world, because everywhere PAL Aerospace presents its equipment and the resources they have available to them, Newfoundland and Labrador is showcased as well.”

If market demand warrants it, the company will create a fleet of four to six more, thereby creating more employment opportunities.

 

kenn.oliver@thetelegram.com

Twitter: kennoliver79

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