Honeywell boosts Middle East and Africa presence


Honeywell Aerospace is boosting its Middle Eastern and African presence, signing an agreement with Jordanian Aeronautical Systems (JAC) to open the first dedicated T53 engine service centre in the region.

JAC will provide localised repair, maintenance and overhaul for both commercial and military operations as part of the three-year licence agreement.

The agreement looks to decrease customer operating costs and support predicted fleet expansion in the region. The service centre will cut JAC’s costs by eliminating international part shipping for its customers.

Helicopter Investor talked to Mosab Alkubaisy, director of Middle East and Africa for Honeywell Aerospace, about its decision to open the centre.

He said: “Honeywell’s support services business in the EMEAI market is seeing continued growth. We have a global footprint providing nose-to-tail maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services to many customers especially in the Middle East, such as Royal Jordanian Air Force, who we have a long-term relationship with.”

The T53 engine powers many popular legacy aircraft such as the Bell UH-1H Huey and the AH-1H Cobra. It has more than 62 million logged flight hours.

“Aviation hub”

Honeywell expects demand for helicopters to increase in the region over the next few years, despite slow economic growth and volatile oil and gas markets. The Middle East and Africa has the second-highest helicopter purchase rate, with up to 22% of operators looking to replace or expand their fleets, according to Honeywell’s March forecast.

Alkubaisy said: “As we’ve seen over the past decade, the Middle East is turning into a hub for aviation.

“As the midpoint for most global flights, it makes sense for MROs to consider basing themselves in this region to lessen the risk of aircraft downtime, which can be costly to the business. There is also the increased appetite for domestic flights, which is a big boon for prospective MROs in the region.”

Cost cutting

Honeywell has worked with the Royal Jordanian Airforce, the owner of JAC, in the past and has supported multiple Air Force aircraft.

Alkubaisy said: “Honeywell is helping Jordanian Aeronautical Systems to not only lower labour and shipping service costs, but also to improve turnaround times when upgrading and maintaining aircraft.”