ASKY Airlines (KP, Lomé) is planning to establish a training and aircraft MRO facility in West Africa in partnership with shareholder, Ethiopian Airlines (ET, Addis Ababa), the latter’s CEO Tewolde Gebremariam has disclosed.
In an interview with The Reporter newspaper, Tewolde said talks with ASKY management and the Togolese government were currently ongoing and that if approved, the MRO facility would cater to Boeing (BOE, Chicago O’Hare) and Bombardier (BBA, Montréal Trudeau) aircraft. ASKY’s fleet currently consists of three B737-700s, one B737-800, and four Dash 8-400s all of which are leased from Ethiopian and all of which must head to Addis Ababa for their respective maintenance requirements.
“Our main MRO hub remains in Addis Ababa and will have regional MRO hubs in Lomé, Lilongwe and Kigali [home to partner RwandAir (WB, Kigali)]. Our planned Lomé MRO hub would maintain aircraft operating in Nigeria, Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal,” he said.
West Africa does not currently have any facilities capable of heavy aircraft maintenance and overhauls. Aside from the ASKY initiative, Arik Air (W3, Lagos) has been toying with the idea of setting up its own large-scale MRO hangars in Nigeria in conjunction with its partner, Lufthansa Technik.
The training facility, on the other hand, will focus on training back-office staff as well as cabin crew.