Cebu Pacific Air (PSE:CEB), the Philippines' largest national flag carrier, and CAE (NYSE:CAE)(TSX:CAE), world leader in aviation training, today held a groundbreaking ceremony for their new aviation training center in the Clark Freeport Zone, northwest of the national capital of Manila. The joint venture to be known as the Philippine Academy for Aviation Training, Inc. (PAAT) is expected to start operations in the third quarter of 2012 and will have the capacity to train over 2,500 pilots annually, as well as other aviation professionals for CEB and third-party airlines in the region.
The groundbreaking was attended by Philippine President Benigno Aquino III, Canada's Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Deepak Obhrai, Philippine government officials, and representatives of CEB and CAE.
"We are proud to be part of the establishment of the first CAE aviation training center in the country. We look forward to making the Philippines' vibrant aviation industry become the hub for highly-skilled, highly competent aviation professionals," said CEB President and CEO Lance Gokongwei. "We are delighted to collaborate with CAE to bring a world-class training facility to the region. This training center will be pivotal to meeting the training requirements not only of Cebu Pacific, but also the region's pilot and flight training requirements in the next 10 years or so."
"CAE is very pleased to partner with CEB to serve their expanding training needs," said Jeff Roberts, CAE's Group President of Civil Simulation Products, Training and Services. "The new training center will be a one-stop training facility for CEB and a hub for training services for other airlines. We are confident the training provided will enhance aviation safety and operational efficiency in the region."
The Philippine Academy for Aviation Training represents a US $40-50 million joint investment. The facility will initially cater to Airbus A319/320/321 series pilot type-rating training requirements and will provide "wet" instructor-led type-rating training for CEB's current and new-hire pilots. Initial, recurrent, conversion and jet indoctrination training will be available to other Airbus operators.
The training center will initially be equipped with two Airbus A320 FFSs with capability to expand by two additional simulators. Training is expected to be added for other aviation personnel in the future, such as cabin crew, dispatch, ground handling personnel and cadets.
Date: Jan 24, 2012