May 30, 2014
New domestic markets are being sought for GippsAero’s signature aircraft the GA8 Airvan, and its new GA10 model, with help from The Nationals Member for Gippsland Darren Chester.
Mr Chester, who is the Parliamentary Secretary for Defence, met with GippsAero senior staff last week and has undertaken to explore opportunities for government purchases of the aircraft.
“The airvan has already proved popular for a diverse range of uses by foreign governments and I’m keen to see the Commonwealth and State Governments considering the locally-made product for security, defence training, surveillance or emergency service use,” Mr Chester said.
“GippsAero is a major employer of 150 staff in the Latrobe Valley and any opportunities to further grow the airvan’s markets are good for Gippsland and good for manufacturing in Australia.
“There is no doubt this is a great product and I will be working with the office of the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Transport to investigate whether there any uses for this craft by the Australian Government.”
In addition, Mr Chester said he would support efforts by GippsAero to display the GA8 to representatives from government departments when it flies to Canberra in the middle of June.
“It’s an opportunity for key staff who are involved in procurement decisions to gain an appreciation of what is available locally and the competitive pricing and operating costs of the airvan,” Mr Chester said.
“All levels of government should investigate the opportunities to support local businesses and make sure we are giving due consideration to locally made products.”