February 09, 2023

$4 million upgrade for Launceston Airport cargo facility underway

Launceston Airport is about to break ground on a $4 million project that will upgrade the Virgin Australia Cargo facility and support local industry in Northern Tasmania.

Virgin Australia Cargo and its cargo operations partner Aus Flight Handling will use the upgraded facility as the hub for all its Northern Tasmania cargo operations, with the ability to transport almost 500 tonnes of products each year.

Launceston Airport CEO Shane O’Hare said the upgrade will modernise the 800-square-metre facility and positions Virgin Australia Cargo to meet the ever-increasing demand for cargo.

“As an island state, it’s critical that our producers can ship to customers. This new cargo facility will enhance Virgin Australia Cargo’s ability to export goods in a timely manner so that customers around Australia and the world can enjoy fresh Tasmanian seafood and produce on their own dinner tables,” he said.

“Virgin Australia Cargo is an important partner of ours. As well as delivering cargo, Virgin Australia has significantly invested in network growth over the past 18 months, including increasing flight frequency and starting new services to destinations such as Perth and Adelaide. All of this is good news for Northern Tasmanians.

“We are also grateful for the investment the Tasmanian Government is making in Northern Tasmania, which underpins its confidence in Launceston Airport as an important infrastructure hub that is supporting growth in our region,” Mr O’Hare said.

Virgin Australia Chief Strategy & Transformation Officer, Alistair Hartley said the facility would grow its cargo operations while helping to realise the increasing trade opportunities for the local economy and Tasmanian businesses.

“We are delighted to partner with Launceston Airport to expand our cargo operations and welcome the support of the Tasmanian Government to develop a stronger trade industry in the state over the next decade,” he said.

“The upgraded facility is expected to see nearly half a million kilograms of premium Tasmanian exports, including its world-class seafood and agricultural products, through its doors and into domestic and international markets each year.

“We are also excited to be working with our long-term partner Aus Flight Handling to ramp up cargo efficiency from northern Tasmania, unlocking economic benefits for the entire state.”

Deputy Premier and Treasurer, Michael Ferguson, said the Rockliff Liberal Government is investing $1.6 million to support the redevelopment due to the benefits it will provide Tasmanian producers.

“Air freight links are critical to the Tasmanian economy, supporting freight supply chains for time-sensitive freight, including our valuable seafood and horticulture sectors,” Mr Ferguson said.

Preparation works will commence this month, with construction expected to be completed by September 2023. Tasmanian company Vos Construction & Joinery will lead the construction project.

Launceston Airport Virgin Australia Cargo facility upgrade render

Australia Pacific Airports (Launceston) acknowledges the First Nations people and Traditional Owners of Tasmania including the Land that Launceston Airport operates on. We pay our respect to their Elders past, present and emerging and extend that respect to all other First Nations People.