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Wed 30 Apr 2008 01:24 AM

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Airbus opens Dubai spares centre

Logistics centre will stock more than 5,000 parts to serve fast-growing Middle East carriers.

Airbus opens Dubai spares centre
SPARES CENTRE: Airbus said it makes sense to be near Emirates airline, its most important A380 customer. (AFP)

European aircraft manufacturer Airbus opened a logistics centre in Dubai on Tuesday to serve fast-growing Middle East carriers, including Dubai-owned Emirates airline.

"You know who are the customers in the Middle East," Airbus Chief Executive Thomas Enders told reporters during the inauguration of the centre located in the airport free zone in Dubai, a member of the UAE.

"Emirates has ordered 58 A380 aircraft. That's a lot and one of the reasons why this spares centre idea makes a lot of sense, to be close to our most important customer for the A380" superjumbo, he said.

Airbus, a unit of European aerospace giant EADS, said the Material and Logistics Centre gives it "greater proximity to valuable customers and facilitates a quicker and more reactive response to their needs".

The centre "will stock more than 5,000 different parts with around 43,000 items in at any one time", offering support around the clock, it said.

In November, Emirates, the Middle East's largest carrier, placed a $20.2-billion order for 70 Airbus A350s and 11 A380s.

Airbus also received a letter of intent from DAE Capital, a subsidiary of public company Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE), to buy 100 aircraft - 70 Airbus A320s and 30 A350s - for $13.5 billion.

Qatar Airways, another fast-growing airline, is also a major Airbus customer.

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