Newcastle Airport’s (NTL) ambition of returning overseas services to the Hunter Region is a step closer after it revealed the Commonwealth Bank (CBA) as sole financier of a new international terminal at the hub.
Worth $240 million, the NTL-CBA tie-up will see the development of a new international facility as well as an upgrade to domestic operations in a “significant expansion plan” for the airport.
“Driving greater economic and social benefits by broadening our domestic and international destinations and contributing to Newcastle’s transformation from a major regional hub into an international destination and a significant second international gateway to NSW, is key to our purpose,” Newcastle Airport chief executive officer Dr Peter Cock said of the new deal.
“We also thank the Federal Government for investing a total of $121 million in our region’s international growth.”
Dr Cock also flagged NTL’s focus on becoming a greener airport, with the expanded facility designed and run with a five-star Green Star rating. A car park covered with solar panels that power more than 30 per cent of the airport will be key to this goal.
Newcastle Airport CFO Allanna Ryan said the new airport would mostly benefit the people of the Hunter region.
“We are delighted to partner with CBA on this critical development to support the growth and sustainability of our region,” she said.
Echoing Ryan’s remarks, Commonwealth Bank Regional and Agribusiness Banking Executive General Manager Paul Fowler said the enhanced airport would be a “key driver of the regional economy”.
“The airport’s expansion and modernisation will significantly increase its capacity and improve connectivity across Newcastle, the Hunter Valley and the Central Coast, driving new business and employment opportunities that add to the region’s prosperity,” he stated.
In late 2018/early 2019, Virgin Australia operated three-times weekly flights between Newcastle and Auckland (AKL), but NTL has not seen international services since.
The second busiest airport in NSW, Newcastle Airport currently welcomes around 1.3 million passengers a year, servicing 12 Australian routes with six domestic airlines.
With its expansion, it aims to grow passenger numbers to about 2.3 million a year by 2028 – equal to a 77 per cent rise in traffic.
NTL also generates around $1.2 billion in economic activity.
Australia’s newest airline, Bonza began flights between its home base, the Sunshine Coast and Newcastle two weeks ago.
Share this story