China's Haite MRO Joins A321 Freighter Conversion Network

 - February 22, 2023, 9:08 AM
Elbe Flugzeugwerke and partners convert A321 passenger airliners to freighters. (Image: EFW)

Freighter conversion and maintenance specialist Elbe Flugzeugwerke (EFW) has appointed its fourth partner for the A321 passenger-to-freighter (P2F) program. On Wednesday, the Dresden, Germany-based company signed a letter of intent with Sichuan Haite Hi-Tech (Haite) under which the Chinese group will convert the Airbus narrowbodies at its Tianjin facility.

Haite will be EFW’s first third-party conversion center. In partnership with Singapore’s ST Engineering, it operates facilities in San Antonio and in Guangzhou, China. P2F conversions are also available at Airbus’s facilities in Germany and Singapore.

Work on the first A321P2F conversion at the Tianjin site is due to start in the third quarter of 2023. Publicly owned Haite provides maintenance, repair, and overhaul services for multiple airliner types. It also develops avionics and trains pilots and flight attendants.

Working with Airbus and ST Engineering, EFW has developed passenger-to-freighter conversion programs for the A320, A321, and A330 aircraft. The company, which since 2016 has been majority-owned by Singapore’s ST Aerospace group, holds the supplemental type certificates for these conversions.