A JOBS boom at Edinburgh Airport is continuing after budget airline Norwegian announced it is to make the airport into a new base, with plans for transatlantic flights from the capital.
Around 30 pilots and 100 air crew will be recruited for the operation.
The news follows hard on the heels of the announcement that about 100 new jobs are to be created this year with expansion of the airport’s shopping offer.
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New routes linking Scotland to airports in the Boston and New York areas are expected to be announced by Norwegian soon.
It intends to operate two or three aircraft out of Edinburgh. Norwegian flew over a quarter of a million passengers from Edinburgh in the 12 months to December 2016, with current routes including Copenhagen, Oslo, Stockholm, Barcelona, Tenerife and Malaga.
The carrier recently announced plans to launch transatlantic routes from Ireland, Norwegian’s chief commercial officer Thomas Ramdahl said: “Edinburgh is a central part of our UK growth plans and together with new aircraft and new flights, we are also creating new jobs in Scotland.
“We are looking for talented crew and pilots to join us in delivering our ambitious growth plans at Edinburgh Airport. As an award-winning airline, with new aircraft and global expansion plans, this is a great opportunity for people to join us as we head into our busiest ever year.
“More jobs in the air will help also create more jobs on the ground and Norwegian’s plans for new flights into Edinburgh will help support tourism, business and hospitality opportunities in the UK’s second most visited city.
“We look forward to unveiling more about our Edinburgh expansion plans in the coming weeks.”
Since 2009, Norwegian has flown more than one million passengers to and from Edinburgh.
The airline already flies low-cost long-haul routes from London Gatwick to the US.
The carrier is the launch customer for the next-generation Boeing aircraft, with over 100 of the B737 Max 8 variant due to be delivered later this year. The upgraded 737s can make longer flights than previous designs.
The airport is continuing to expand its airside retail space, adding 20 outlets in the past year, which has already created nearly 200 new jobs.
New retailers added in 2016 included JD Sports, Next, Fatface, Krispy Kreme, Michael Kors and the Tartan Weaving Mill.
A number of outlets have also been refitted or seen additional units added to existing brands.
Refits planned for 2017 include retailers Hugo Boss, Scottish Fine Gifts and WH Smith.
At least two new units are also in the pipeline, the airport said.
The airport’s chief executive, Gordon Dewar, said: “2016 has been an incredible year for Edinburgh Airport and the expansion of the retail side of the business is a key part of our success.
“Edinburgh Airport’s growth in the non-aero market allows us to be competitive and attract more new airlines and more new routes in and out of Scotland’s capital.
“This strategy has not only seen passenger numbers grow to record levels – we are on course for 12 million this year – it benefits airlines too. It is good for us, good for our customers and ultimately – with the creation of more jobs and enhanced connectivity from the nation’s capital city – it is good for Scotland.”