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Ponta Delgada ,  March 30, 2012

Santa Maria to have Aviation Training Centre for pilots and cabin crew, announces Vasco Cordeiro

The future Aviation Training Centre in the Azores, whose construction began today on the island of Santa Maria, will allow "the training of pilots from the base flight phase to the issuing of Airline Pilot License for Airbus A320 and A310," announced the Regional Secretary for the Economy on Friday.

The government official revealed that "the training sessions start from April 15 to May 15 with five base flights contracted with the Flight Simulation Company, a Dutch pilot training entity. There were will another training session held between May 26 and June 10 with base flights contracted with the Portuguese Aviation Training Centre."

Vasco Cordeiro spoke during the ceremony to lay the first stone of the contract works for the construction of the future Aviation Training Centre in the Azores and launched a challenge to the University of the Azores to take part in the work developed on Santa Maria in this field with the purpose of "initiating the process to the creation of a higher degree in Aeronautical Sciences."

The Regional Secretary for the Economy explained that "this structure was initially targeted at the training of cabin crew and ground personnel of SATA Group." It was subsequently transformed into "a project with more ambitious goals and with a wider scope; this project consists in the establishment of an Aeronautics Training Centre which, in addition to the aforementioned services, will also include the training of pilots."

The government official highlight the "symbolism" of the ceremony held last Friday as it took place on an island closely linked to aeronautical activities. This initiative also "enhances the potential of Santa Maria and its infrastructures, ranging from the runway to air transport assistance services." Therefore, this is not an investment to honour or pay tribute to the history of Santa Maria. This investment made by the Government is, in fact, an investment in the future of Santa Maria to boost local economy," stated the government official.

In fact, the Aviation Training Centre aims "to support the development of the Azores and assert the island of Santa Maria as an asset to the Region and its development," revealed the Regional Secretary.

Besides these aspects, Vasco Cordeiro also stressed the fact that the Aviation Training Centre "also evidences the considerable investment made by the Regional Government and SATA in enhancing the skills developed by the company's staff in the area of training and certification of flying personnel cabin crew. This fact has provided SATA with the possibility of training its staff in the Azores with positive economic effects for both the company and the Region."

 The infrastructure whose first stone was laid on Friday represents "an investment in the reinforcement of our export capacity, mainly in the area of services."

"The potential market for this centre, which is not limited to the markets of Portuguese Speaking Countries, evidences that the Azores have an immense potential that we are increasingly aware and we are now able to enhance it," stated the government official.

Vasco Cordeiro also left "a word for all those who contribute on a daily basis to the work developed by SATA and to the progress of our land, without forgetting all men and women of little faith that have launched unjustified criticism on this project; however their disbelief has only increased our strength, our dedication and our commitment. "


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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