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Boeing, GMR to set up freighter conversion line in India

GMR Aero Technic is the first Boeing supplier in India and new partnership will develop infrastructures to convert passenger aircraft into freight planes.

Boeing India and GMR Aero Technic representatives at signing deal to develop Boeing Converted Freighter (BCF) line in Hyderabad, India. Image - Twitter/ Boeing India

Following the deal with Air India to provide 220 Boeing airplanes, Boeing India entered into an agreement with GMR Aero Technic to establish a new Boeing Converted Freighter (BCF) line in Hyderabad, India.

As part of the agreement, the new facility will convert passenger aircraft into freight planes to tap the growing demand for cargo in the global market.

In a statement, Boeing said GMR Aero Technic is the first Boeing supplier in India that will have the capability to support future conversions of both domestic and foreign aircraft.

“The collaboration adds to the company's continued investment to support the growth of cargo and help expand complex aircraft modification capabilities and Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) in India, supporting India’s aspiration to become an aviation and aerospace hub for the region,” it added.

Commenting on the partnership, president, Boeing India, Salil Gupte said, “Our cooperation with GMR Aero Technic is not only a testimony of the maturation of Indian MROs in the country to support the vision of Aatmanirbhar Bharat, but also support the anticipated growth of the cargo sector in the region.”

Ashok Gopinath, CEO, GMR Aero Technic remarked that maintenance, repair and overhaul services in India has been one of the fastest- growing markets globally due to the rise in the Indian aviation industry.

He added, “The collaboration with Boeing reaffirms our capability to provide world-class MRO services and further contribute to the “Make in India” initiative. We thank Boeing for the opportunity given and look forward to working together for future initiatives.”

According to Boeing’s Commercial Market Outlook, India’s air cargo growth is expected to average 6.3 per cent annually, driven by the country’s manufacturing and e-commerce sectors, including its Make in India initiative. Boeing forecasts demand for more than 75 freighters, including production and converted freighters.