- Highlights competencies of civil MROs to support defense maintenance and the need for ‘Maintain-in-India’ to be accorded equal significance as ‘Make-in-India’ ~
New Delhi. 04 August 2022. India’s largest independent MRO and aviation services and solutions major – Air Works – has handed over the last of the six P-8I maritime patrol aircraft after completing Phase 32 maintenance checks to Boeing and the Indian Navy. The heavy maintenance of these aircraft was successfully completed at the Air Works facility at Hosur, Tamil Nadu.
The succesful handover of the sixth P-8I not only reflects Air Works’ proficiency in offering capable and reliable support to both civil and defense platforms, but also represents a major milestone in the nation’s ambition to become self-reliant in maintaining its various defense and aerospace assets, by undertaking increasingly complex tasks (checks) indigenously, especially on platforms of strategic importance.
Commenting on the milestone, D Anand Bhaskar, Managing Director & CEO, Air Works Group said, “We are grateful to both Boeing and the Indian Navy for their trust in Air Works to deliver on such a unique and mission-critical project for the very first time in the country. Not only has every successful inspection increased our confidence of managing such intricate and specialized projects on behalf of our defense forces, but the fact that we have been able to value add with our ingenuity and decades-long experience to enhance the quality of maintenance of these premium assets, has particularly boosted our motivation and self-assurance.
This is an incredibly proud moment for the everyone at Air Works, especially the P-8I project team – who
have transformed their ardent passion into a brilliant outcome, and we look forward to expanding our
“One of the key learning of this project has been that aviation & aerospace OEMs must take a leaf from
Boeing’s BIRDS hub initiative and partner with domestic MROs like Air Works, to successfully realize the
Government’s Make-in-India program, to scale up local maintenance capabilities and ensure that more and
more maintenance assignments – irrespective of their complexity or their nature – civil or defense – are
undertaken within the country, for cost effectiveness and to create a strategic depth.” he added.
Air Works and Boeing signed a strategic collaboration last year for the MRO of two critical Boeing defence
platforms in India – the P-8I operated by the Indian Navy (IN) and the VIP transport fleet (BBJ) operated by
the Indian Air Force (IAF). Under this collaboration, three P-8Is had already undergone maintenance at Air
Works and three more were simultaneously inducted earlier this year – which intensified the complexity of
the entire project.
“Ensuring mission-readiness for our customers and providing them seamless services and support on our
platforms is imperative for Boeing. Having completed heavy maintenance checks for six P-8Is for the Indian
Navy by our partner Air Works is testimony to our joint and long-standing commitment towards bolstering
MRO capabilities in the country,” said Salil Gupte, President, Boeing India. “We have always supported the
development of indigenous aerospace and defense capabilities in India, and through the years, invested in
partnerships within the Indian aerospace ecosystem in MRO, services and sustainment, as much as in
manufacturing, R&D and innovation, and talent,” he added.