By Edward Attwood
Repair unit to tender Al Ain facility this year, has regional expansion plans in long-term
Mubadala Aerospace subsidiary Advanced Military Maintenance Repair and Overhaul Company (AMMROC) plans to complete its Al Ain facility at some point in 2013.
The plant, located adjacent to Al Ain International Airport, will be put out for tender shortly, with construction to begin this year, the firm’s CEO said.
“We have a timeline of between 18-22 months, so you could say it will be complete some time in 2013,” AMMROC CEO Fahed Al Shamesi told Arabian Business.
AMMROC, which will maintain the UAE’s military fleet of fixed-wing and rotary aircraft, has already partnered with US defence giants Sikorsky and Lockheed Martin, with aggregate investment totalling an estimated $800m.
Al Shamesi said that the firm would not be welcoming any further partners in the short term.
“Now we have to work out the model, work with these two firms and focus on the UAE,” the CEO said.
“Then of course, we will have time to have other relationships with other international firms, because even if we have the two biggest — and maybe the best — companies, we still have to maintain the relationships with other OEMs and suppliers, because there are so many platforms that need to be supported. “So yes, the door is open, but not now,” Al Shamesi added.
Further down the line, however, AMMROC will consider taking its expertise to the regional market.
“In fairness we are going to focus on the UAE, and then, of course, we are going to the region,” the CEO said. “We understand exactly what’s going on around us, but as I said, we need to focus on the UAE. It will then be easier for us to go to the region and try to market ourselves, because we have the right partners, we have the right capabilities and we have the right tools to go out and try to get some other business from the region.”
The UAE’s move to build an indigenous MRO industry is replicated in Saudi Arabia, where Boeing has a 49 percent stake in Alsalam Aircraft Company.