MAS-GMR Aerospace Engineering MRO facility to be launched this month
Written by Subash, Arjun   
Thursday, 20 October 2011
Hyderabad: MAS-GMR Aerospace Engineering Company Ltd (MGAE), a  50:50 joint venture (JV) between Malaysian Aerospace Engineering Sdn Bhd (MAE), a subsidiary of Malaysian Airline  System Bhd, and GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd. (GHIAL), a subsidiary of GMR infrastructure limited in India, is expected to be launched soon during the month of October 2011.

MGAE has one wide body hanger, one narrow body hanger with three bays and an another paint cum narrow body hanger with associated workshops.

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) in India is completing the audit of the JV facility early this month, paving the way for airline operators to consider this facility for their MRO needs. In November 2011, this facility will be audited by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and if the facility also meets the stringent criteria of EASA, it will be able to attract European registered aircraft for MRO services.

This joint venture is a third party Airframe Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility, the first of its kind of this scale, located in the special economic Zone (SEZ) at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, Hyderabad in India.

It has the capability to provide base maintenance services, starting with narrow bodied aircraft like Airbus A320, ATR 42/72 and Boeing 737–NG, and subsequently wide-body aircraft like A330 and Boeing 777.

MAE, with over 100 customers, was acknowledged as the 2009 Best MRO Centre in Asia Pacific by Frost & Sullivan, Singapore. In January 2010 MAE sealed a 3-year maintenance support agreement with SpiceJet for its fleet of 19 Boeing 737 New Generation (NG) series aircraft. MAE also secured 19 aircraft checks for Kingfisher’s A320.

MGAE currently has close to 350 employees and the bulk of the manpower is made up of local Indian skilled work force, while retired Malaysia Airlines engineers and technicians are also employed at competitive remuneration packages to kick-start the operations.

In preparation for the operations of the MGAE facility at Hyderabad in 2011, MAE trained 72 Indian Engineers hired by MGAE. These students underwent 2 years on-the-job-training programme in Subang, Malaysia and returned to Hyderabad as aircraft maintenance engineers in MGAE. Support staff of MGAE also underwent familiarization exposure in MAE, Subang. In addition, MAE provided assistance in the design of the Hyderabad joint-venture facilities and operational readiness support.

The Asia Pacific countries, together with China and India combined already account for 23% of total MRO expenditure. The demand for MRO service is fastest growing in Asia given large fleet orders and lower costs compared to the European Union and North America. 

Most Indian airlines currently send their aircraft for heavy maintenance to Singapore, Dubai, Malaysia, China, Germany, France, Jordan, Sri Lanka or Israel, which have advanced MRO facilities.

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