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Port Macquarie’s reputation as the home of the drone gained another tick of approval this week with a successful visit by a Chinese delegation to the scenic Mid North Coast town.

Aspiring Chinese drone pilots could soon be utilising the top class training facilities located at the Surf Life Saving NSW Regional Headquarters to further their education in this exciting industry as they look to obtain their CASA (Civil Aviation Safety Authority) qualifications.

Last Monday representative from Port Macquarie Hastings Council, the Port Macquarie Chamber of Commerce, SLSNSW and the Ripper Group welcomed a visiting Chinese UAV (Drone) consortium to Port Macquarie headed by Mr Janci Yang - Chairman of the ShenZhen UAV Industry Association and Mr Ronnie Chen - Chairman of JTT.

The group were in Port Macquarie to inspect the training facilities at SLSNSW Regional Headquarters with the view to the Ripper Group providing commercial training for visiting Chinese UAV Students.

Although the pilots can still elect to study in China, one key advantage of obtaining CASA qualifications is that it is recognised in multiple countries, which is vitally important in an industry which is expected to enjoy rapid growth.

A one of the world’s largest drone manufacturers JTT is are looking to train up to 100 Chinese students annually. Should this eventuate this has the potential to provide a huge economic stimulus to the region as well as enhance the international reputation of the Port Macquarie community.

Under the terms of the proposed plan the UAV Student Pilots will live in Port Macquarie for up to four weeks at a time where they will be put through the demanding course along with training for search and rescue, film and photography, asset inspection and agriculture.

One key advantage of being located in Port Macquarie for the visiting students is that it will become so much more than a study trip. They will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the local culture, practice their language skills and also see how UAV technology is being employed in the Australian environment.

Surf Life Saving NSW CEO Steven Pearce welcomed the visit of the Chinese delegation. “It was a delight to be able to host the visiting UAV Chinese Consortium and to show them not only the first class training facilities at our Port Macquarie Regional Office but the local beaches and environment.

“UAV technology is a cutting edge industry with limitless potential both on and off the beach, and this pilot training program in Port Macquarie marks a wonderful opportunity to build closer relationships with China and within the local community,” said Mr Pearce.


Wednesday 6 September 2017