Sangster airport on track for profitable year

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

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CHIEF executive officer of MBJ Airports Limited Dr Rafael Echervarne says the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, St James, is on track for another profitable year.

In an interview with JIS News, Dr Echevarne said the airport, in its 15th year under the MBJ Airports Limited lease agreement, not only continues to be a feather in the cap for brand Jamaica but is now the number-one gateway in the Caribbean.

“The Sangster airport continues to shatter records each year… and continues to overperform. It connects Jamaica to more than 50 destinations worldwide and saw a record 4.2 million passengers passing through last year,” he informed.

The CEO further noted that millions of dollars have been pumped into doing infrastructural work at the facility, including the runway, and “we are on par” with some of the top airports in the world.

“Over the past 15 years, we have never shied away from improving the physical infrastructure of the airport and to create an authentically Jamaican experience for the travelling public,” he added.

Dr Echevarne said that accolades continue to pour in for the airport, informing that “we have been named the Caribbean's Leading Airport for nine consecutive years by the World Travel Awards”.

“The airport also provides employment for more than 150 Jamaicans,” the CEO pointed out.

Dr Echevarne said that everything about the airport “looks and feels Jamaican” and that it was a managerial decision “from the top” to use the country's iconic brand as “a major marketing tool”.

“We have really come a long way as a team, and I can promise you that the best is yet to come. Also, it's not just that we are celebrating 15 years, but it's how we got here and some of the challenges we have faced,” he added.

Dr Echevarne said that MBJ Airports Limited has a number of events scheduled throughout 2018 to commemorate the 15-year milestone.

“We just had an official celebration at the airport where a historical exhibit and a commemorative sign were unveiled. This was followed by an Airport Forum and also a visit by airport stakeholders, schools and civic groups, who came to view the Hurricane Hunter aircraft at the airport,” he said.

The CEO emphasised that MBJ takes its responsibility as a corporate citizen very seriously, and that through its 'Change for Children' initiative, “we have been making a difference in the lives of many children in the Montego Bay area”.

“We also continue to support the Autism Centre in Brandon Hill and Caribbean Christian Centre for the Deaf through this initiative. MBJ recently partnered with Spot Valley High School to provide mentorship support, and we still continue to participate in charity marathons and coastal clean-ups,” Dr Echevarne added.

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