VolgaTekhnoport Seeks MRO Partner
A Russian entity established to develop the aerospace sector in the city of Ulyanovsk is seeking an international partner to set up a major third party maintenance and overhaul business. It also is seeking to attract other aviation-related enterprises.
VolgaTekhnoport is a joint venture involving the Ulyanovsk regional administration and United Aircraft Corp. (UAC), which controls the Aviastar production plant located at Ulyanovsk’s Vostochny airport. It is establishing a special economic zone at the airport where it is building two Antonov An-124/Boeing 747-sized hangars, due to be completed in 2013, to supplement existing MRO facilities operated by Volga-Dnepr Technics, the maintenance arm of the Russian cargo carrier.
“We are speaking with global players in the MRO market,” says Denis Baryshnikov, who is general director of VolgaTekhnoport. “We have two proposals, either to organise the infrastructure with their own investment or as a joint venture.”
Russian airlines currently spend around $1 billion annually on airliner maintenance — the bulk of which is with foreign providers — and with this forecast to rise to over $6 billion within 10 years, the country is keen to establish local infrastructure to capture the expanding business. Ulyanovsk, with its established aerospace presence and relatively low labor rates, has been earmarked as a location for this business to be developed.
VolgaTekhnoport has a letter of intent with SuperJet International to establish an airframe MRO center for the Sukhoi Superjet 100 (SSJ). The zone’s longer-term aim is to create an SSJ completion plant in Ulyanovsk for domestic customers.
“Our plan is to have around five residents at VolgaTekhnoport: one or two in MRO, one or two in production and one or two in air transport,” says Baryshnikov.
The long-term future of the relatively modern Aviastar plant, which builds the Tu-204 and An-124, is unclear. Current plans envisage final assembly of the all-new MS-21 single-aisle transport to be undertaken at program leader Irkut’s plant in Irkusk. However, Ulyanovsk is likely to house the MS-21 completion center for the all-new single-aisle transport, which is due to enter service in 2016. MS-21 interiors supplier Zodiac has decided to locate its joint-venture in Ulyanovsk, says Baryshnikov.
Fonte: Aviation Week