The Minister of Transport, Omar Alghabra, and the British Columbia Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, Rob Fleming, announced on July 21 that the Government of Canada is providing an additional $1.596 million to the Government of British Columbia to continue the support of essential air services for remote communities in British Columbia.
The new funding announced is in addition to the $2.176 million already provided to the Government of British Columbia in 2020, to maintain essential air services to remote communities. This financial contribution will help maintain minimum levels of air transportation services to remote communities in British Columbia to ensure continued access to essential goods and services, including community resupply of food and medical supplies.
There are 30 communities with airports or aerodromes in British Columbia which are considered remote. Under the funding agreements for the Remote Air Services Program, a fixed amount of funding is allocated to each province or territory that has remote communities. Provinces and territories are responsible for allocating the funding to specific air carriers. Remote communities are those that rely on air service as the only practical year-round mode of transportation.
“Our government understands the importance of reliable air services in sustaining the social and economic well-being of our northern and remote communities. This investment will ensure that, as we work towards recovery and travel restart post pandemic, people living and working in remote British Columbia communities will continue to have access to air services for delivery of essential goods and services, and for essential travel between communities,” said Alghabra. “We are pleased to be working with our territorial and Indigenous partners and the air industry to support communities as we start to build back better.”