Why international flights from Avalon will transform Geelong’s economy
On Sunday 4 February, low-cost international airline carrier AirAsia announced it will move its Melbourne operations to Avalon Airport effective later this year.
The announcement was greeted with great fanfare, and rightly so. AirAsia X Malaysia will operate two daily flights to Kuala Lumpur from Avalon – opening up access to over 130 international destinations in a 10-year deal.
With potential for 500,000 international passengers through Avalon in the first year of operation, there is also huge opportunity for fresh food freight on every flight.
Geelong is undergoing a renaissance, and is ripe for investment. We’ve all seen the increase in auction clearance rates and escalating property prices. However, this announcement will completely transform the local economy on a scale we haven’t seen before. We would need to go back to the gold rush era to understand its importance.
Immediately there will be 200 jobs created and based at Avalon Airport. Those employees will need to buy goods and services and secure housing. Having Victoria’s second international airport on our doorstop will then generate economic growth and opportunity in our tourism, hospitality, accommodation and retail sectors very quickly. The Holiday Inn development in Ryrie Street in the Geelong CBD cannot come too soon. Even more jobs will be created.
Next, we will see growth in the professional services economy, who in turn will spend on goods and services and generate more employment. Growth in our agribusiness sector will be extraordinary. The booming populations in Asia are demanding our fresh food. Now it can be delivered twice daily to their doorstop.
Our CBD is reviving, our property market is booming…but there is now a new game-changer afoot and Geelong will be an even bigger target for investors and people who need to have easy access to international flights for business. We have only just heard this announcement, and the possibilities for Geelong are sky-high.
Written by Michael De Stefano