New airline MRO facility
Air New Zealand has signed a licensing agreement to overhaul and repair auxiliary power units (APUs) produced by Honeywell Aerospace at its Christchurch engineering and maintenance base.
The eight-year deal will see the airline as the only certified Honeywell maintenance shop for the APU 131-9A model in the Asia Pacific region and will cover units in its own airliners as well as third-party customers. The agreement is expected to also create 45 new skilled engineering jobs in Christchurch.
“This agreement is significant for the airline’s engineering business,” says an Air NZ spokesman. “Honeywell Aerospace is a major player in the airline components industry, supplying APUs to around 75 percent of the world’s narrow-body jet fleets. This new agreement will allow us to continue to grow our component MRO [maintenance, repair and overhaul] business in Christchurch and remain competitive within the region.”
The licensing agreement will give airlines in the region faster turnarounds by seeking support from the regional facility.
Air NZ has selected the Honeywell APU 131-9A for its new fleet of Airbus A320neo aircraft, announced in June 2014 to refresh its international A320 narrow-body fleet. The first example is due for delivery in late 2017, and Air NZ will also retrofit its existing A320 short-haul fleet with Honeywell APUs.
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