One hundred and fifty days in, the new lessee and operator of Port Hedland International Airport is not wasting anytime to accelerate expansion plans. The PHIA Group of Companies is underway with investment and development plans for the Port Hedland International Airport, with the goal of becoming one of Australia’s best regional airports.
Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of PHIA Operating Company, Mitchell Cameron, said “in addition to meeting our obligations under the lease we are in active pursuit of opportunities to benefit the community and business, by encouraging additional air traffic to and from Port Hedland.”
Last week Mr Cameron returned from Denpasar after meeting with Indonesian Airport Executives to identify mutually beneficial opportunities for both Airports by working together as partners on each end of the journey. Discussions included connectivity and inbound Tourism, looking at ways to engage expats living Bali to travel back, via Port Hedland to see family, events and festivals.
Authorities in Indonesia confirmed that travellers and transiting passengers are no longer required to pay ‘out of pocket’ Indonesia Airport Tax also called their passenger service charge.
Also focusing on local initiatives, Mr Cameron attended the 2016 WA Tourism Conference in Perth where 50 speakers and panellists from across Australia, including Government Ministers, industry leaders and tourism experts convened. Mr Cameron met with tourism executives, exploring destination development and expansion of Port Hedland’s inbound and outbound markets.
Next in CEO’s busy schedule is travel to the eastern States to meet with airlines this month. Mr Cameron said “the objectives of these discussions will be working with our partner airlines, updating them on our early progress and our initiatives for the expansion of the Port Hedland International Airport”.
Mr Cameron’s key messages for the airlines is promoting interstate and international connectivity. Reiterating the airport’s refreshed logo ‘Gateway to the Pilbara’, Mr Cameron will present opportunities for increasing the Airport’s passenger catchment and ways to work together to promote travel packages. “Port Hedland International Airport is the Pilbara hub for flights to their eastern states and international connectivity. If someone from the area wants to go to the footy in Melbourne or a holiday in Queensland, then flying directly from Port Hedland offers value for money and substantial saving in time – extending holiday time.”
Mitchell poses the question “Where can you go on Saturday?” Departing from Port Hedland International Airport on Saturday afternoon, you can be in Bali for Sunset, Singapore for evening Supper, or London for a proper British breakfast the next morning. It's make sense, just 2 hours and you're in Bali, and from there, the world awaits”.