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Jeddah - Yasmine El Tohamy - RIYADH: UAE flag carrier Emirates has unveiled plans for a $950 million investment in constructing an engineering facility at Dubai World Central.
According to a statement, the new complex will span 1 million sq. meters and is set to fortify Dubai’s position as a global aviation hub.
The statement added that it is explicitly designed to meet the needs of Emirates’ aircraft fleet and operational demands into the 2040s.
The facility will also serve as a hub for excellence in commercial aviation engineering services within the Middle East.
Emirates is considering the possibility of extending spare capacity to other airline operators.
Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, chairman and chief executive of Emirates, expressed confidence in the airline’s future growth and the aviation sector.
He said: “The new facility will enable Emirates to be entirely self-sufficient when it comes to maintenance, repairs, overhaul and all engineering requirements for our aircraft fleet.”
Al-Maktoum added, “It gives us operational stability, flexibility and quality assurance. With the projected growth of the region’s aviation sector, Emirates’ new engineering facility will also play a key role as a center of excellence, attracting the involvement of global players across the aviation supply chain.”
The top official explained that this move will create thousands of skilled technical jobs and add value to Dubai’s economy.
The engineering facility will offer a comprehensive range of specialized aircraft engineering services, encompassing routine checks, custom paint jobs and light to heavy maintenance programs.
Other services will include engine repairs, testing, complete cabin interior fit-outs and aircraft conversions.
Ali Mubarak Al-Soori, Emirates Group’s executive vice president for facilities, projects management and group procurement and supply chain, said: “Construction work on Phase 1 is expected to begin in 2024 and be completed in 2027.”
He added: “Provisions have been made for further expansion, potentially doubling the capacity in Phase 2, in line with Emirates’ fleet growth and operational requirements.”
Al-Soori revealed that the new engineering complex will take sustainability into its design, including using green building materials, installing solar panels on roofs across the entire campus, and setting recycling systems for oils and wastewater.
The initial phase will yield eight maintenance hangars, one paint hangar capable of handling commercial aircraft up to A380, an engine run-up facility, around 20 support workshops, extensive storage facilities and administrative offices.
The existing Emirates Engineering Centre at Dubai International will continue supporting the airline’s operations, with the new complex at DWC initially managing overflow work and heavy maintenance programs requiring extended aircraft ground time.
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