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Tue 30 Mar 2010 04:00 AM

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India’s growth story

India is emerging as an important and lucrative MRO hub, says Air Works director and group head of business development Ravi Menon.

India’s growth story
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India is emerging as an important and lucrative MRO hub, says Air Works director and group head of business development Ravi Menon.

How is India developing its MRO industry?

The Indian MRO industry is pegged at US$600 million which is expected to touch $1.06 billion in a couple of years. Recent studies have also showed that the country's MRO industry will be growing at 15% annually which invites a lot of investors and entrepreneurs towards this lucrative industry. Although at a nascent stage, the Indian MRO industry has tremendous growth opportunities.

What challenges does the Indian MRO industry face?

So far, one of the major hindrances in India evolving as an MRO destination is the lack of MRO companies having a globally recognised certification like the EASA or FAA to be able to service the leased aircraft of the domestic and international airlines. We hope with Air Works being the first Indian company to receive the EASA certification for airframe maintenance, the domestic and international airlines will find value in what we offer and India will begin to emerge as an MRO hub.

What can the Indian MRO industry offer airlines?

One of the major advantages that India offers to the world is the availability of highly qualified engineers who can easily be trained for the job. Cost advantage is another key factor. In addition to this, India offers the proximity advantage for countries like Singapore, Malaysia and the UAE etc, that can avail a faster turnaround time due to the convenient geographical location.

How will using an EASA certified MRO company benefit an airline?

The EASA certification - the global certification which enables MRO companies to service specific aircraft (depends on type of certification) - further demonstrates that India is able and ready to compete with the world in this multibillion dollar industry. We lower costs for the airline and, also, many airlines in the Middle East operate flights to India, so the ferry costs can be offset.

How is Air Works establishing itself in the MRO market?

Air Works holds the EASA certification and is the only third party MRO service company which has certification from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation, giving us approval to work on ATR 42-500, 72-500 and Boeing 737-600/700/800/900 aircraft. Our Bangalore facility can currently accommodate two ATRs or a Boeing 737, but the company is investing $45 million to construct a wide body hangar. This will be operational by the start of 2011 and will be used to house and repair all wide body aircraft, as well as maintenance and repair of private and chartered aircraft.

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