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Toronto (March 10, 2016) – Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport was among the Canadian transportation facilities to be named in an expanded U.S. Customs Preclearance program. The announcement, which also included Quebec City’s Jean Lesage Airport, came as part of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s first official visit to the U.S. to attend meetings with President Barack Obama and is part of an effort to make travel between the two countries more convenient for travellers and further enhance trade relations.
“PortsToronto has been working on expanding U.S. Customs Preclearance at Billy Bishop Airport for years and we are very pleased with today’s announcement,” said Geoffrey Wilson, CEO PortsToronto, the owner and operator of Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. “As the sixth busiest Canadian airport servicing the US, Billy Bishop Airport is an important gateway that will benefit from inclusion in this successful program. Most important, U.S. Customs Preclearance will provide easier access to the U.S. for our passengers and, as such, is important to PortsToronto as a means of further enhancing the customer service experience at our airport. U.S. Customs Preclearance also presents the ability to service U.S. markets more broadly and creates opportunity to add new markets within our existing slot structure and allocation. We look forward to engaging with officials from Canada and the U.S. to begin discussions about implementing a U.S. Customs Preclearance facility at Billy Bishop Airport and realizing the opportunities that exist in the areas of efficiency, customer service, trade relations and security.”
“This is a tangible step forward on establishing a process that will make a real difference in the lives of citizens on both sides of our border. To their great credit, the leaders of our two countries have made preclearance a priority, and this announcement is the latest sign of that,” said Senator Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont. “We especially thank the City of Toronto and Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, Porter Airlines, and Burlington International Airport for their work in helping to achieve this breakthrough. To carry this progress forward, our bipartisan enabling legislation now has been introduced and is pending before the Senate and the House. I will do all I can to make sure that our bill becomes a high priority for action.”
About Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport
With flights to 23 destinations in Canada and the United States and connections to 80 locations around the world, Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport provides travellers coming into and out of Canada's largest city with a convenient travel option located less than three kilometres from Toronto’s downtown core. In 2015, the airport served 2.5 million passengers, making it the ninth-busiest airport in Canada and the sixth-busiest Canadian airport serving the United States. Billy Bishop Airport was this month named one of the best airports in North America by Airport Council International.
About PortsToronto (http://www.portstoronto.com)
For more than 100 years PortsToronto, (formerly the Toronto Port Authority), has worked with its partners at the federal, provincial and municipal levels to enhance the economic growth of the City of Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area. PortsToronto owns and operates Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, which welcomes more than two million passengers each year; the Outer Harbour Marina, one of Canada's largest freshwater marinas; and, Terminals 51 and 52, which provide transportation, distribution, storage and container services to businesses at the Port of Toronto. PortsToronto is committed to fostering strong, healthy and sustainable communities and has invested more than $8 million since 2009 in charitable initiatives and environmental programs that benefit communities along Toronto's waterfront and beyond. PortsToronto operates in accordance with the Canada Marine Act and is guided by a nine-member board with representation from all three levels of government.
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Erin Mikaluk, Senior Manager, Communications & Media Relations
Tel: (416) 863-2065
Cell: (647) 298-0544