Published:12 March 2019

TOP: Deputy Leader of the Opposition, Tanya Plibersek announces commitment of $9.9 million to fully fund Stage 2 of the Asia Pacific Aviation Hub. BELOW: Vice-Chancellor Professor Nick Klomp welcomes the funding commitment.

CQUniversity Australia has welcomed an announcement from the ALP that would see $9.9 million committed to fully fund Stage 2 of the Asia Pacific Aviation Hub.

The announcement was delivered by Deputy Leader of the Opposition, Tanya Plibersek.

The $9.9 million funding commitment would allow the University to deliver additional course offerings in Airport and Airline Operations and Air Worthiness.

It will also facilitate the development and delivery of world-class operational research in areas such as pilot situational awareness, fatigue, flight and Air Traffic Control (ATC) activity, and governance and safety.

CQUniversity’s Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Nick Klomp explained that the funding promise was a major coup for both CQUniversity and the Cairns and Far North region.

“Cairns has the potential to become a leader for world-class aviation training in the Asia Pacific region.

“The city is a strategic gateway to the Asia Pacific and already plays a key role in airborne freight and passenger traffic with direct links to China, South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines and New Zealand.

“CQUniversity is committed to being the first university to offer tertiary level aviation qualifications in Cairns and to provide a clear pathway for students to earn a commercial pilot's license.

“To this end, CQUniversity has so far invested $4.8 million to establish Stage 1 of the Asia Pacific Aviation Hub at the Cairns Airport and this week, we have welcomed aviation students to the facility for the first time.

“This funding commitment would allow us to further expand our aviation training, education and research delivery in the region and establish Cairns as a world-leading region within the aviation sector,” said Professor Klomp.

CQUniversity’s Associate Vice-Chancellor for the Cairns region, Jodie Duignan-George, explained that completion of Stage 2 of the hub would create additional student places and jobs.

“The completion of this project will allow CQUniversity to deliver training and education to up to 150 students per year and will allow us to attract new domestic and international students to the region.

“This hub will allow students to qualify as pilots or as airline and airport managers.

“Along with this, it is estimated that up to 60 construction jobs would be created during the development phase and a further 15-20 permanent roles after this.

“This will put Cairns on the map when it comes to aviation training and research and will have some terrific economic flow-on benefits,” said Ms Duignan-George.