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For Immediate Release

September 18, 2009

Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure





VICTORIA – The British Columbia International Open Skies Summit will host government, business, community, aviation and academic leaders from Canada and around the world later this month, Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Shirley Bond announced today.


“As Canada’s Asia-Pacific Gateway to North America, we encourage the federal government to pursue Open Skies agreements with Asian nations,” said Bond. “This important one-day conference will play a pivotal role in developing new economic opportunities for B.C. and other western provinces by exploring issues related to Open Skies.”


The summit will be held on Friday, Sept. 25 at the Vancouver Convention Centre. It will promote the economic benefits of Open Skies and increase awareness for the public and business community. Discussion topics include: the progress being made on international air access to B.C., the U.S. experience with Open Skies agreements, the airline and airport industry perspectives on the impact of Open Skies and the critical importance of Open Skies to British Columbia, Canada and other nations.


Premier Campbell will be joined by Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach and representatives from the Canadian government. Speakers include:


·         Andrew Steinberg, former assistant secretary for Aviation and International Affairs, U.S. Department of Transportation.

·         Andrew Parker, senior vice president, Emirates Airline.

·         Dr. Hugh Dunleavy, executive vice-president, Commercial Distribution, WestJet.

·         Barry Rempel, chairman, Canadian Airports Council.

·         George Petsikas, president, National Airlines Council of Canada.

·         W.K. Lim, Regional vice-president, Singapore Airlines.

·         Dr. Tae Oum, UPS Foundation chair in transportation, Sauder school of business, University of British Columbia.

·         Dr. David Gillen, director, Centre for Transportation Studies, Sauder school of business, University of British Columbia.

·         Dr. Mike Tretheway, president, InterVISTAS Consulting Inc.

·         Dr. Yeong Heok Lee, professor, Korea Aerospace University.


“By opening up air service, B.C. communities could attract visitors, students and investors, stimulating our regional economies,” said Bond. “For example, an Open Skies agreement between Canada and Japan would increase passenger volume on the Tokyo-Vancouver route, having a $55-million impact annually on Canada’s tourism industry.”



For more information on the British Columbia International Open Skies Summit, please visit Additional background information is available online at






Baljinder Jacques

Public Affairs Bureau

Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure

250 387-5798



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