While the realignment of Boeing Commercial Airplanes’ management structure last week might have marked something less than a revolution in its approach to program development, it certainly signaled a recognition that something fundamental needed to change. Over the next 18 months Boeing expects to increase output across its commercial product lines by 25 percent while it manages no fewer than five development programs.
Beirut’s main FBO, Cedar Jet Center, is promoting its full-service offering at Lebanon’s main gateway, Rafic Hariri International Airport, this week at MEBA. CJC was established in 2005 by Middle East Airlines (MEA) Group to coincide with the opening of the airport’s general aviation terminal. In 2008, the company joined forces with group affiliate Masco to offer line maintenance services for a range of business aircraft. The partnership now offers aircraft hangarage and full maintenance services for the Airbus ACJ319, Boeing BBJ, Cessna Mustang and Hawker 800/850/900XP.
Qatar Airways underscored its endorsement of the largest variant of Airbus’s new A350 XWB last week by raising its firm order count for the A350-1000 to 37 from 20. The contract amendment also added three A350-900s to its previous order for 17, but it effectively scrapped Qatar’s firm order for 20 A350-800s.
Policy-making paralysis over much-needed reforms and liquidity concerns raised by the grounding of Kingfisher Airlines has deterred investors, vendors, lessors and suppliers from doing business in India’s air transport sector, according to delegates attending last month’s Asia-Pacific Airlines Association Assembly of Presidents in Kuala Lumpur. Association calculations show that average profits among Indian airlines amount to just $1 per passenger.
Saudi Arabia’s NasJet claims it is poised to grow revenues by 20 percent next year, after a healthy 6 percent gain during 2012. The increase, according to CEO Ghassan Hamdan, is due to growing aircraft management and operations support and more local charter agreements and charter business. In the first quarter of 2013, NasJet will open a new FBO at King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh in conjunction with Switzerland’s ExecuJet.
To answer increasing demand in the Far East and Indian subcontinent, Jet Aviation is implementing a major expansion of its Singapore MRO and FBO facility. Located at Seletar airport, Jet Aviation Singapore is tripling its hangar space to 7,500 sq m, while increasing exterior apron space to 9,300 sq m.
With FBOs in Dubai, Jeddah and Riyadh, and additional maintenance and management services at other locations, Jet Aviation (Stand 590) is one of the major business aviation players in the Middle East. The company has recently announced a number of developments for the region, including new capability for its Dubai-based MRO and FBO center.
That new capability comes in the form of FAA approval to perform base maintenance on the Bombardier Challenger 604 and 605, and light scheduled maintenance (A checks) on the Airbus single-aisle family (A318/319/320/321).
The Middle East remains the sales sweet-spot when it comes to regions that business jet manufacturers look to for customers despite its relatively small size and the rapid emergence of China, Brazil and other countries where momentum is building. This is true in particular of large cabin jets and corporate versions of airliners.
Beirut’s main FBO, Cedar Jet Center (CJC, Stand 214) has a full-service offering at Lebanon’s main gateway, Rafic Hariri International Airport, and is at MEBA to promote this business-aviation friendly destination and its ever-broadening range of services.
The significant investments in expanding the aircraft completions and maintenance capabilities of Amac Aerospace have surely been made with the Middle East very much in mind.