Dozens of businesses, executives, municipalities, and chambers of commerce have expressed their approval and support for the installation of a U.S. Customs pre-clearance facility at Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport (YQB).
From Beauce to Victoriaville to Rivière-du-Loup, socio-economic players in the greater Québec City area and many others have rallied to make Québec City the next Canadian city to have a pre-clearance facility.
Aéroport de Québec inc. (AQi) received dozens of letters of support from major local businesses, including Desjardins Group, Exfo, Industrial Alliance, Institut National d’Optique (INO), and Université Laval, the Beauce-Sartigan Regional County Municipality, the conseil de la Communauté métropolitaine de Québec.
The response was unanimous in its support of the installation of a U.S. Customs pre-clearance facility at YQB.
“For us, the support of the business community and municipalities in the greater Québec City area is crucial,” said Gaëtan Gagné, president and CEO of AQi. “Installing a U.S. Customs pre-clearance facility will bring considerable economic spinoffs to the region, while making it easier for our passengers to travel to the United States.
“We are confident that, with the support of our community, as well as that of the federal government and Transport Canada, YQB will become the next airport to have such a facility. It’s a key added benefit for Québec City and an undeniable asset that will stimulate and support economic growth in the region and across eastern Québec.”
A pre-clearance facility at YQB was one of main requests the mayor of Québec City made to the federal government on June 1.
Pre-clearance: a key economic asset for development
In addition to generating major economic spinoffs, a pre-clearance facility at YQB would substantially reduce the time passengers spend in transit in U.S. airports because passengers would no longer need to clear U.S. customs upon arrival.
And passengers could also take advantage of cutting-edge U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) technology at YQB, cutting wait times even further.
With such a facility, YQB could also offer connections to more American cities because the U.S. destination airports would not necessarily need to have customs facilities. This would open the door to a number of airports that currently serve the U.S. domestic market only.
A customs facility would strengthen pivotal initiatives in the region and throughout Québec, such as the Plan Nord and the development of the cruise industry. Cruise passengers would be able to take direct flights to the United States once they disembark at the Port of Québec, rather than having to pass through other airports that have customs facilities.