Representatives of China’s Ordos Airport Industrial Zone (OAIZ) in Inner Mongolia and China Aviation Investment Group (CAG, Booth 4666) announced the establishment of the Ordos World Aviation Expo Industrial Zone, created to stimulate development of an indigenous aircraft manufacturing and services industry as well as high-end tourism.
Dubai-based flight services company Hadid announced today that it is opening branches in the U.S., India, Sri Lanka, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Malaysia, Brazil and South Africa. Hadid also recently added an office in Ethiopia. “The market dynamics and economic potential of these countries, as well as growing interest in our services in the mentioned regions, are the main factors behind the decisions,” the company said. This brings Hadid’s footprint to 19 offices worldwide.
Flexjet and Qatar Executive quickly lined up to be the launch customers for the new Gulfstream G500, which was revealed this morning alongside its larger G600 sibling during a ceremony at the aircraft manufacturer’s Savannah, Ga. headquarters. Qatar signed a memorandum of understanding today for up to 20 Gulfstreams, while Flexjet placed an order for 50 aircraft, including options.
Business aviation in Jordan continues to grow at a modest rate, according to new research commissioned by the Middle East and North Africa Business Aviation Association (MEBAA) ahead of the group’s conference today in the Jordanian capital. The research, conducted by Germany-based WingX Advance, showed that while there has been almost no growth in the number of active and registered business jets in Jordan since 2000, the number of operators in the country has increased at an annual rate of 2.7 percent.
Start-up carrier Cambodia Bayon Airlines in late August inked the largest-ever international contract for Xi’an Aircraft MA-60 turbopropsafter reaching terms on a deal with state-controlled aerospace conglomerate Aviation Industry Corporation of China (Avic). Valued at $450 million at list prices, the contract includes a firm order for two MA-60s and a letter of intent for 18 more over five years. Avic has received commitments for some 270 MA-60s, almost 100 of which it has delivered.
The FAA has granted Jet Aviation Saudi Arabia repair station authorization for Gulfstream aircraft. The approval allows the MRO to support its customers in Jeddah and Riyadh with light scheduled maintenance (A checks) on the Gulfstream II, GIII, GIV and GV.
Japan’s Amakusa Airlines expects to become the country’s first ATR 42 operator under the terms of a lease deal it signed in late July with Nordic Aviation Capital (NAC). The letter of intent calls for the Kumamoto Prefecture-based regional airline to take the aircraft, a new ATR 42-600, in the fourth quarter of next year. The announcement followed NAC’s firm order at the Farnborough airshow for 25 ATR 42-600s. NAC also took options on 50 of the turboprops, raising the potential value of the deal to more than $1.55 billion.
The Middle East Business Aviation Association (MEBAA) will host its next MEBAA Conference in Amman, Jordan, on October 14. Initial plans called for it to be held in Tunisia next month, MEBAA said, but this venue has been postponed until next year. Following the success of the last MEBAA Conference in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in April, the event in Jordan will also draw upon members and prominent stakeholders across the region’s aviation sector “to deliberate and discuss the issues pertaining to the Middle East and North Africa’s business aviation market.”
The long-expected follow-on order from Saudi Arabia for Eurofighter Typhoons has still not materialized, but in its half-yearly report BAE Systems revealed that it expects to receive orders worth about $2.2 billion to upgrade Saudi aircraft. Earlier this year, a protracted renegotiation of the original “Al Salam” deal for 72 aircraft was finally concluded.
Nearly three years after the U.S. military withdrew from Iraq, Navy F/A-18 Hornets and Air Force F-15s, F-16s and unmanned MQ-1 Predators returned to the sky over the country this past week to stem the advance of Islamic extremists and support humanitarian airdrops.
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