Ameco (Aircraft Maintenance and Engineering Corp) Beijing has added a third international customer to its Chongqing outstation. Earlier this month the MRO provider entered into a contract with Finnair to support the airline’s four-times-weekly A330 flight to the airport. Ameco Beijing’s Chongqing facility also supports Qatar Airways and TNT.
The rebirth of the Asian Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition (Abace) in Shanghai was, by common consent, a resounding success–especially considering the many challenges that organizer NBAA faced in running a modern trade show in China’s main business city. The March 27-29 event drew 156 exhibitors in a 43,000-sq-ft space provided by Shanghai Hawker Pacific Business Aviation Service Centre at Hongqiao Airport. The static display was populated by some 27 aircraft and was overlooked by eight exhibitor pavilions occupied by companies too large to exhibit inside the main hangar.
Membership of the Asian Business Aviation Association (AsBAA) has risen from 45 to 58 over the past year, with the most recent company to sign up joining just before yesterday’s annual general meeting held on the eve of the ABACE show in Shanghai. The new member is AIN, publisher of ABACE Convention News.
Last month FlightSafety International and Gulfstream Aerospace opened a new learning center in Hong Kong to serve Asian operators of the G450 and G550 jets. Equipped with a G550 level-D-qualified full-flight simulator that is convertible to a G450, the new facility expects to provide 250 “training events” this year, according to David Davenport, manager of FlightSafety’s Savannah learning center, a key player in defining the Hong Kong facility and its responsible manager now that it is up and running.
Flight Training Adelaide, which trains cadets for airlines such as Cathay Pacific, Dragonair, Qantas, QantasLink, JAL Express and J-Air, has ordered eight firm and 18 optional Diamond DA40 light single-engine aircraft for its Parafield, Australia base. The contract was signed with Diamond Aircraft in conjunction with Australian distributor Hawker Pacific, which will provide after-sales support.
Not without reason, China continues to dominate expectations for business aviation growth in Asia, but the continent as a whole presents a vast if complex opportunity for the industry.
The 747-8 Intercontinental finished its certification test flying today with a function-and-reliability flight back to Washington’s Puget Sound area from Barbados via Houston to clear customs, Boeing confirmed this afternoon. The flight marked the end of an eight-month certification program for the passenger version of Boeing’s latest jumbo jet, first delivery of which the company now expects during the first quarter of next year.
Beijing is the location of a new Boeing service center dedicated to providing product support for China’s growing commercial aviation industry. The new center consists of specialists in flight operations, spare parts and maintenance engineering dedicated to serving airlines in China.
FlightSafety International (FSI) has named Sikorsky Helitech of Brisbane, Australia, an approved maintenance training center to provide training for Pratt & Whitney Canada engines in Australasia. FSI will provide training courseware, a graphical flight simulator and other training aids.
The Asian Business Aviation show formed a key facet of March’s Asian Aerospace show in Hong Kong. It attracted some 5,300 visitors–including some of China’s fast-growing group of billionaires–who had 22 business aircraft to examine.