US aircraft manufacturer Boeing has unveiled plans to set up a new logistics centre in India ahead of a significant order from Tata Group-owned Air India. Even though the manufacturer did not disclose the costs required to establish the centre, several reports estimated the investment at Rs2bn (around $24m).
The new centre will focus on increasing the availability of spare parts to domestic air carriers, thereby reducing flight cancellations due to maintenance. Boeing said that the move will help regional clients maintain higher fleet utilisation and mission readiness rates.
The firm’s projections for India in the coming two decades reveal the requirement of 2,200 new planes, including 1,983 single-aisle jets.
Boeing India supply chain management director Ashwani Bhargava said: “A key element of efficient customer support is rapid response and distribution of replacement parts. The India Logistics Center will allow better responsiveness and build on Boeing’s existing global reputation for the highest quality of customer service.”
The latest news comes just before an expected Air India order for almost 500 jets, which is to be split equally between Boeing and France’s Airbus. Valued at more than $100bn, this order is said to be the single largest order by any airline.
Boeing will supply 220 aircraft under the contract, which includes 190 of its 737 MAX narrow-body jets, 20 787 wide-bodies, and ten 777Xs. Airbus will provide 250 aircraft, covering 210 single-aisle A320neos and 40 wide-body A350s.
Furthermore, Boeing opened the Global Support Center in India to strengthen the country’s aviation ecosystem. This centre will conduct technical workshops and projects to improve aeroplane performance and support the adoption of Airplane Health Management (AHM) systems.
It will also carry out flight operations symposiums, engineering seminars, and the development of technology studies affecting airports and operators.
In addition, the centre will work alongside operators and regulators on ‘structures and airworthiness; the Maintenance Error Decision Aid (MEDA), a human-factors tool; Air Traffic Management (ATM); aerospace optimisation; and low visibility operation through Head-Up Display (HUD) and Enhanced Flight Vision System (EFVS)’.