Teesside International Airport has officially thrown open the doors to its new £2.5million state-of-the-art cargo handling facility.
The purpose-built 21,000sq ft hangar provides cutting edge security screening technology, as well as handling, freight-forwarding, customs clearage and storage.
The facility can also be used for specialised charter flights for both air and road freight.
As part of the development, the airport now has secured Regulated Agent status from the Civil Aviation Authority, allowing it to handle secure cargo at its site.
The fully accredited facility is already creating jobs, recently appointing a Head of Cargo with 25 years of airport experience alongside security staff. When fully up and running, it is expected to create up to 30 good-quality jobs.
The investment comes as Teesside Airport turns its focus to its land and property assets, including its £200million Southside Business Park development, to diversify its revenue streams and further secure the airport’s financial future.
The new facility will all serve to capitalise on the huge opportunity within the region.
For example, a total of £2.9billion of goods were exported from the North East in Q4 2021, with a 47.3% recovery from the pandemic low point in Q2 2020, higher than the national average.
It will target the some 71,000 businesses within an hour’s drive of the airport, as well as those further afield.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “We’ve always said our airport needs to be more than just flights to Alicante to succeed – as important as they are – and now this is fast becoming a reality.
“Hot on the heels of Willis’ £25million investment in an aircraft maintenance facility, we’re now launching another key asset, our cargo handling facility.
“With the right building blocks in place generating new opportunities, we can give the people the flights they are crying out for while making sure the airport can stand on its own two feet for decades to come.”