GNWT provides funding to support NWT airlines

News Releases

Yellowknife — May 8, 2020

Today, Minister of Finance Caroline Wawzonek announced that the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) will allocate $8.7 million in funding to support Northwest Territories’ (NWT) passenger-based airlines who offer scheduled service during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This support is part of the $130 million announced by the federal government on April 14 to help the territories and northern businesses during the pandemic. The GNWT will flow through $8.7 million to NWT airlines to ensure that these companies can continue to provide scheduled connections into communities, providing essential goods, like food and medical supplies. 

The GNWT will allocate the funding, as follows:

Canadian North


Air Tindi


Northwestern Air Lease


North Wright Airways


Aklak Air


This new funding is in addition to previously announced waiving of all landing fees at NWT airports, as well as leases, licences, and concession fees for all businesses operating at NWT airports. These previously announced supports are expected to save NWT aviation businesses approximately $2 million.

This funding announcement represents the first of two phases. The GNWT will continue working with Transport Canada and Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada (CIRNAC) towards additional funding for the NWT aviation industry beyond scheduled passenger service airlines, such as charter companies and rotary wing.


“The current COVID-19 pandemic is having a significant impact on the Northwest Territories’ economy— including the aviation sector. Aviation businesses are a critical part of our economy, and our way of life in the North. NWT residents and businesses rely on the aviation industry to keep us connected and to deliver essential supplies into our communities. This funding is designed to ensure that NWT’s scheduled passenger air carriers can continue to operate during the COVID-19 pandemic without the need to increase costs for consumers.  I know there is still more need within our airline industry and I look forward to working with Transport Canada and CIRNAC to ensure that we maintain our connections to all communities at this critical time.”

-Caroline Wawzonek, Minister of Finance

Quick facts:

·       Previously announced waivers for NWT aviation businesses are for April, May and June 2020.

·       To date, the GNWT has announced over $26 million in support for people, businesses, and communities in response to COVID-19.




For all COVID-19 Media Requests, Contact:

Cabinet Communications

Government of the Northwest Territories