Middle East and North Africa http://www.timesaerospace.aero/ en Wed, 17 Jul 2024 11:20:25 +0100 IndiGo brings Abu Dhabi closer to Southern India http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/route-planning-and-tourism/indigo-brings-abu-dhabi-closer-to-southern-india

The flights on the Abu Dhabi to Mangaluru route will operate daily, from August 09, 2024, and the Tiruchirappalli to Abu Dhabi will operate four times a week, starting from August 11, 2024. Starting from August 10, the direct flights from Coimbatore, also known as ‘Manchester of South India’, will operate thrice weekly. 

Recently, the airline had announced new direct flight between Bengaluru and Abu Dhabi, which will operate six times a week from August 01, 2024. These new routes will further strengthen IndiGo’s international connectivity, with non-stop flights connecting the thriving capital city of United Arab Emirates to key cities in Southern India.

Vinay Malhotra, Head of Global Sales, IndiGo, said: “We are pleased to announce new direct flights from Mangaluru, Coimbatore as well as Tiruchirappalli to Abu Dhabi. With the addition of these flights, IndiGo now operates 89 non-stop flights a week to Abu Dhabi from 13 cities in India. These flights will provide smooth and convenient options for business as well as leisure travel to the UAE and further add to the gateways for travelers to explore the wonderful island city and beyond. As India's preferred airline, we remain steadfast in our commitment to providing enhanced connectivity and delivering an affordable, on-time, courteous and hassle-free travel experience to our customers.” 

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IndiGo will launch direct flights to Abu Dhabi from Mangaluru, a major commercial center in Karnataka, and Coimbatore and Tiruchirappalli, famous tourist spots in Tamil Nadu.

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Wed, 17 Jul 2024 10:20:25 +0000 eNethersole 68671 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
INJAZ Al-Arab and Boeing launch sustainable aviation course in Middle East http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/sustainability/injaz-al-arab-and-boeing-launch-sustainable-aviation-course-in-middle-east

The course is available on the INJAZ Campus digital education platform and aims to equip 4,000 high school and university students in Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Kuwait, Morocco, and Oman with the relevant knowledge and skills to drive sustainability in the aviation industry.

 

Kuljit Ghata-Aura, president of Boeing Middle East, Türkiye, Africa, and Central Asia, said: “Achieving commercial aviation’s net zero target by 2050 requires involving the next generation. Boeing is partnering with non-profits and academia to educate and inspire young talent who will eventually design, build, and operate zero-emissions aircraft or develop new pathways for sustainable aviation fuels (SAF)”.

 

By fostering a better understanding of corporate social responsibility, sustainable operations, renewable energy transition including SAF, and more, the course will inspire students to pursue rewarding careers in aviation and sustainability.

 

Akef Aqrabawi, president and CEO of INJAZ Al-Arab, said: "We are thrilled to introduce our first-ever sustainable aviation course, marking a significant milestone in our longstanding partnership with Boeing. INJAZ has always been dedicated to empowering young people to make positive changes in their lives and communities. With environmental concerns ranking among the world's top priorities today, we believe this course will serve as a gateway to building a professional sustainability-driven community."

The course is available both offline and online, offering flexibility to meet the specific needs of each participating country. It welcomes students registered within academic institutions in Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Kuwait, Morocco, and Oman.

The curriculum comprises six comprehensive one-hour modules, covering various topics related to sustainability in aviation. Participants will engage in real-world case studies, gaining practical insights into the delicate balance between decarbonising aviation and preserving and growing the societal and economic benefits of it.

For over 15 years, INJAZ Al-Arab and Boeing have been working closely to upskill and empower the youth in the Middle East and North Africa.

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INJAZ Al-Arab, a member of Junior Achievement (JA) Worldwide, has joined forces with Boeing to launch a course on aviation sustainability.

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Wed, 17 Jul 2024 09:15:48 +0000 eNethersole 68669 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Honeywell signs mechanical service centre agreement with Gama http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/maintenance/honeywell-signs-mechanical-service-centre-agreement-with-gama

Gama Aviation Engineering will now provide line maintenance of Honeywell TFE731 business jet engines and auxiliary power units, or APUs, at its Bournemouth facility in the United Kingdom. This enhances Gama’s service capabilities and enables those seeking maintenance at Bournemouth to remain in compliance with Honeywell’s Maintenance Service Plan.

“Our collaboration with Gama Aviation Engineering strengthens our service network and ensures that operators have more access to authorised maintenance. This agreement underscores our commitment to providing reliable and efficient maintenance support for aircraft operators in the region,” said Anthony Florian, president for Europe, the Middle East, Africa and India at Honeywell Aerospace Technologies. 

“‘We are pleased to have broadened our services on the Honeywell TFE and APU platforms. This is a significant milestone that will enhance our ability to provide comprehensive services, top-tier mechanical expertise and support to our customers,” says Paul Kinch, managing director of maintenance, repair and overhaul services at Gama Aviation Engineering.

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Honeywell has selected Gama Aviation Engineering as an authorised channel partner to expand its aviation service network in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region.

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Wed, 17 Jul 2024 09:03:08 +0000 eNethersole 68668 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Emirates carries three million passengers on the Newcastle to Dubai route http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/route-planning-and-tourism/emirates-carries-three-million-passengers-on-the-newcastle-to-dubai

The airline currently serves Newcastle with a daily flight, offering customers access to more than 130 destinations via its home and hub, Dubai. 

Julie Bailey, Emirates’ regional sales manager in the UK, said: “Newcastle is a very important gateway for us in the UK and we’re proud to be marking a new milestone by carrying three million passengers on the route. Over the past two decades, Emirates has played a pivotal role with boosting trade and tourism to the city – connecting the Northeast to the world and supporting the growth of many local businesses. We look forward to continue serving the region and to flying customers better with world-class products and services Emirates is renowned for.”

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Emirates has reached the three million passenger milestone on its Newcastle to Dubai route.

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Wed, 17 Jul 2024 08:57:28 +0000 eNethersole 68667 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
First for aid FAI in good health http://www.timesaerospace.aero/features/business-aviation/first-for-aid-fai-in-good-health

First for aid FAI in good health

PICTURE: FAI Aviation Group

FAI Aviation Group has taken significant steps to solidify its presence within the Middle East - particularly with its medevac arm.

FAI Aviation Group is a global provider of mission critical aviation services. The 37-year-old company offers fixed-wing air ambulance, special missions, VIP charter, aircraft management and full MRO services. It has retained a sales and medical assistance office in Dubai for over 20 years.

It recently received Commercial Airline Medical Escort (CAME) accreditation from the European Aeromedical Institute (EURAMI) for its Dubai-based medical escort service.

Barbara Baumgartner, managing director, FAI rent-a-jet DMCC branch, said: “This is a fabulous endorsement for FAI and its medical escort service, which underlines our unwavering attention to quality, safety and service excellence in our air medical operations. Our Dubai-based medical escort service is hugely popular with our largest Middle Eastern clients and we look forward to continuing to welcome patients and all who fly with us throughout 2024 and beyond.”

The Dubai office offers a medical escort service on commercial aircraft as an additional service to its existing regional air ambulance clients as well as its direct clients.

The company has scooped a number of high-profile awards for its air ambulance work, including last year being awarded “air ambulance company of the year” from Middle East Aviation Awards during the Dubai Airshow.

“As the preferred partner of medical assistance, insurance and government organisations in the region for over two decades, FAI is experienced in meeting all the socio-cultural needs of its clients in the Middle East,” said Baumgartner.

“Of course, we also assist end clients to fly their family members for either treatment abroad or repatriate patients back to their home country. We offer an extensive regional network and importantly, a thorough understanding of the special characteristics of the region.”

Baumgartner offered a recent example of a medevac flight from the UAE.

“This month we flew a 29-year-old from the UAE to Los Angeles enabling the patient to hopefully use this last live-saving chance of a lung-transplant. It had been medically a very demanding mission but also logistically very challenging. To fly this high-risk critical patient literally around the world, we had to specially reconfigure one of our Challenger aircraft at our base in Germany prior to starting the mission from the UAE,” she explained.

Baumgartner said FAI Aviation Group is focusing on expanding its operational capabilities in Dubai recognising the critical importance of high-quality medical services in aviation.

“FAI Aviation Group is actively hiring more UAE-based doctors and nurses with ICU experience,” she said. “This expansion is aimed at enhancing the quality and range of its medical aviation services, reflecting its commitment to providing the highest standards of care and safety for its clients.”

The group’s fleet includes five Bombardier Global Express, six Bombardier Challenger 604s, and five Learjet 60s.

The company’s hub in the region is the dedicated business aviation airport, Al Bateen Executive in the UAE.

“Close access to Emirates and Etihad Airways enables efficient crew changes and also provides logistical support for FAI’s Asian business operation,” explained Baumgartner.

“While FAI does not currently base any aircraft permanently in the region, it will typically have at least one of the fleet operating in the Middle East daily.”

The company recently celebrated a ‘key milestone’ with its expansion in  the region.

“FAI has established a company in the Kingdom of Bahrain. This move aligns closely with the vision of its strategic shareholder, the Bahrain Mumtalakat Holding Company, which is the sovereign wealth fund of Bahrain and a significant minority stakeholder in FAI Aviation Group,” said Baumgartner.

“Bahrain offers a strategic advantage with its recent airport expansion and strengthened position in the regional aviation space, positioning the Kingdom not only as a hub for regional traffic, but also as a key gateway for transitory traffic to Asia.”

A critical component of FAI Aviation Group's expansion in Bahrain is the pursuit of a Bahrain AOC (air operator certificate) license, aimed primarily at bolstering its VIP passenger charter business segment.

Baumgartner added: “The pursuit of the AOC license will enable FAI Aviation Group to operate more effectively within the region, offering enhanced services to its clients and reinforcing its commitment to excellence in aviation.”

Marcelle (Ella) Nethersole

Marcelle (Ella) Nethersole

Ella is a news editor for digital news channels including Arabian Aerospace, African Aerospace and Times Aerospace TV.

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Wed, 17 Jul 2024 08:32:08 +0000 pIvanova 68665 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Flydubai on the recruitment drive http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/air-transport/flydubai-on-the-recruitment-drive

This includes pilots, cabin crew, engineers as well as various positions across the business. Today, Flydubai has grown its workforce to more than 5,800 skilled professionals representing 140 nationalities, more than 1,200 of whom are pilots. It is on track to hire more than 130 new pilots by the end of this year. Since the beginning of 2024, Flydubai has hired more than 440 new colleagues, an increase of six per cent since last year.

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To support Flydubai’s growth trajectory, there is an ongoing recruitment drive to add more professionals to its workforce.

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Tue, 16 Jul 2024 12:15:03 +0000 eNethersole 68663 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Riyadh Air and Delta sign strategic agreement http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/air-transport/riyadh-air-and-delta-sign-strategic-agreement

Riyadh Air CEO Tony Douglas, said: “We look forward to enjoying a very warm and productive relationship with Delta Air Lines, one of the largest and most successful airlines in the world. Riyadh Air and Delta Air Lines share common goals and pursue the highest standards in many areas including guest experience, loyalty, and sustainability, built upon great networks and strong connectivity.”

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Riyadh Air and Delta Air Lines have signed a Strategic Cooperation MoU with the goal of introducing a broad range of benefits for customers traveling between North America and Saudi Arabia.

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Tue, 16 Jul 2024 09:04:13 +0000 eNethersole 68661 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Etihad Airways and Batik Air Malaysia enter codeshare partnership http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/route-planning-and-tourism/etihad-airways-and-batik-air-malaysia-enter-codeshare-partnership

The agreement now allows Etihad guests to conveniently travel to five new domestic codeshare destinations in Malaysia: Johor Bahru, Langkawi, Penang, Kota Kinabalu and Tawau; along with three international points, Da Nang and Hanoi in Vietnam, and Perth in Australia.

With the agreement, both inbound and outbound Malaysia passengers will have a wider choice of flights on the combined networks. 

Batik’s network is now easily accessible to customers, who can connect via its gateway in Kuala Lumpur, served by twice-daily Etihad flights from Abu Dhabi. 

Arik De, chief revenue and commercial officer at Etihad, said: “This collaboration significantly enhances our codeshare network, offering travellers seamless access to five key destinations in Malaysia, including the idyllic island of Langkawi, the culturally and culinary rich city of Penang, and Kota Kinabalu, the gateway to Borneo’s tallest peak Mount Kinabalu.

Equally, we eagerly anticipate extending a warm welcome to customers from Asia visiting our home in Abu Dhabi, experiencing our renowned hospitality, as well as passengers connecting to Etihad’s growing global network in the Middle East, Africa, and Europe via our Abu Dhabi hub."

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Etihad Airways and Batik Air Malaysia have launched a codeshare partnership to boost connectivity for passengers of both airlines.

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Tue, 16 Jul 2024 08:44:07 +0000 eNethersole 68660 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
Emirates SkyCargo orders five more Boeing 777 Freighters http://www.timesaerospace.aero/news/air-transport/emirates-skycargo-orders-five-more-boeing-777-freighters

The new purchase takes Emirates’ order book to 245 Boeing widebody aircraft, including 10 777 Freighters.

“Demand for our world-class product and services is growing exponentially, further amplified by Dubai’s Economic Agenda which aims to double foreign trade and reinforce the city’s position as a global trading hub. This investment in additional Boeing 777 capacity enables us to cater to customer demand and marks a step forward on our long-term strategic growth plan,” said His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman and chief executive, Emirates airline and Group.

“The next phase of our strategy will include a full assessment for our future freighter fleet reviewing all aircraft options to ensure we are best equipped to respond to the evolving demands of the market and reaffirming our confidence in the role of airfreight and, more specifically, Emirates SkyCargo, in global trade.”

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Emirates SkyCargo has ordered five additional Boeing 777 Freighters. 

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Tue, 16 Jul 2024 08:37:32 +0000 eNethersole 68659 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero
SAMI's in the fast lane to Vision 2030 http://www.timesaerospace.aero/features/defence/samis-in-the-fast-lane-to-vision-2030

SAMI's in the fast lane to Vision 2030

SAMI Aerospace

Saudi Arabia’s SAMI (Saudi Arabia Military Industries), a Saudi Public Investment, created in January 2018 is expanding at quite a ferocious pace. That’s been a priority for CEO Walid Abukhaled, who has worked hard to ensure SAMI meets the objectives of Saudi Vision 2030, with the need to localise 50 per cent of Saudi’s defence spending a top priority. Alan Warnes investigates.

In February 2022, that number stood at three per cent, today the figure is 15 per cent and SAMI is managing to increase that percentage by setting up joint ventures – 11 of them to date, with US, European and South Korean companies as one route.

The most recent being the agreement between the Saudi MOD and Turkey’s Baykar, which will allow SAMI to assemble the Bayraktar Akinci twin turboprop unmanned aircraft system (UAS). The SAMI CEO told reporters during Dubai Air Show last year, “We will build the Akinci airframe, produce the avionics, cabling and harnesses, to manufacture the aircraft in Saudi Arabia.”

He added that the domestic development of UAS products was a priority and a ‘strategic element’ in SAMI’s aerospace business. The recent World Defense Show, held in Riyadh from February 4-8, saw its ambitions in the shape of a futuristic unmanned combat aerial vehicle that one source claimed could be flying within two years.

There are many strains to SAMI Aerospace. On October 24 last year, the commander of the Royal Saudi Air Force, Prince Turki bin Bandar unveiled a new strategy and identity for the newly-created SAMI Aerospace Mechanics following the acquisition of Aircraft Accessories and Components Co in early 2023.

Speaking on the occasion, he said: “We all understand the importance of the role national companies play in building local capabilities and competencies in the field of aircraft maintenance.

“The role of the workers in these factories is just as important as the role of our soldiers in maintaining the security and safety of our country, so I would like to thank everyone who has contributed to this important transformation.”

The SAMI Aerospace chairman, Abdulsalam Al-Ghamdi, said: “Today we celebrate the launch of a new strategy and identity for SAMI Aerospace Mechanics, which we believe transitions us from a defense-centric MRO to a formidable player on the global civil and defence aviation stage, and a major contributor to achieving a transformation in the aerospace centre.”

Meanwhile, the acquisition of Alsalam Aerospace Industries is all but completed, with an announcement on the cards for quite a while now. Alsalam based in Riyadh is a provider of aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul services as well as upgrading the Boeing F-15S/SA Eagle.

The company performs heavy maintenance and modification on civil and military aircraft at its facilities in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and has three climate-controlled widebody hangars with dedicated military hangars with a wide range of support shop capabilities including composite repairs.

Another major Saudi aerospace company, Advanced Electronics Company (AEC) was acquired by SAMI in December 2020 and rebranded SAMI Advanced Electronics.

It was the biggest military industries deal ever concluded in Saudi Arabia. Specialising in the likes of modern electronics like radars, as well as digital and security services and military satellite systems, will allow SAMI to build up another pillar, and integrate into its vision.

Rebranding of the new businesses was evident at the SAMI Aerospace stand at WDS in February – with Alsalam Aerospace Industries referred to as SAMI Aerospace Airframes.

Abullah Almaghlooth, director SAMI Aerospace - Airframes division, is part of the team that manages and establishes a clear strategy of the MRO, formerly Alsalam Aircraft Industries, but preferred to discuss the new division not the individual parts that SAMI has rebranded.

“SAMI Aerospace Airframes is responsible for the maintenance, repair and overhaul of several aircraft platforms in addition to supervising the supply chain that feeds into that.  We have great capabilities that have been developed and upscaled by SAMI.

“As part of those responsibilities, we maintain mechanical components such as fuel systems and propellers. There is also the airframe repair and overhaul, in addition to unscheduled and scheduled depot maintenance.”

SAMI Aerospace
Assembly of the Baykar Bayraktar Akinci unmanned combat air vehicle will soon get underway by SAMI. PICTURE: Alan Warnes

SAMI Aeropsace Airframes has two main hubs according to Almaghlooth without wanting to name them although one is known to be at King Khalid International airport where the bulk of the MRO work is caried out. That is in addition to the military bases, where SAMI engineers carry out both first- and second-line maintenance.

“We look after the likes of F-15s, Typhoons, Hawks, C-130s, E-3 AWACS, 707 tankers, and A330 Multirole Tanker Transport (MRTT) in addition to helicopters. We are building up great capabilities on the latter, like airframe maintenance, technical support and technical supply for the AS 332 Super Pumas and AS 565MB Panthers.”

SAMI has of course been involved in the Boeing F-15S to F-15SA Eagle upgrade and Almaghlooth said, “We have done a lot of great work on the upgrade – it’s very complex and the work has to be precise, like disassembly and assembly of these aircraft and manufacturing of the wings and fuselage.”

Boeing told the author that if the US aerospace giant was to win an order for 54 F-15EX Eagle IIs, then SAMI could be involved in the upgrade of existing F-15SAs too.

“Interesting,” said Almaghlooth, “But I’m not really part of that vision, at the end of the day it’s a government decision, and I’m sure they will make the right one, not only in terms of the great capabilities but more importantly on what it will add to the country in terms of localisation. I mean in terms of skills and production, when we can build the people and facilities.

“We have been doing a lot of localisation for the past 30 years, so its not something new for us. It is very important to look into what the added value is on top of what has been done over the past 30 years. That is the most important thing.”   

WDS of course celebrated the end of the RSAF Hawk assembly line at King Faisal Air Base, Tabuk, so it means the facility there is now all but empty. There were plans to assemble the Typhoon there several years ago, that were eventually abandoned.

Now with the likelihood that the RSAF will acquire at least 54 Eurofighter Typhoons, there is a possibility that Typhoon assembly is back on the table, and where better to do that than at the site where the Tornado sustainment programme upgrades were carried out and BAE Hawks were assembled.

Could SAMI Aerospace support whatever happens there next? “It’s a BAE facility,” Almaghloot said, adding “but SAMI could support and be willing to help and do as much as possible to ensure that the capabilities built up over the past five years under BAE Systems is not lost. Something will happen there for sure.”

He continued: “There is always a way to redeploy people and make use of their capabilities. Of course, it would be great if you have a continuous programme to follow on, but you know things take time. I’m pretty sure those capabilities will not be lost by the country. We will capitalise on and utilise them elsewhere whether its for maintenance, for an engineering capability or transferring the know-how to a new generation so they can make use of it.”

The SAMI Aerospace Airframes director finished: “We have good ambitions and we are looking forward to building our capabilities that will being value to our people and enhance the defensive needs of the country.”

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Wed, 17 Jul 2024 08:21:45 +0000 pIvanova 68664 at http://www.timesaerospace.aero