, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 10 – Kenya Airways has been certified by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) for maintenance activities of aircraft components.
The milestone approval allows KQ to perform aircraft component maintenance of European registered aircraft and other global operators that recognise the certification.
Kenya Airways Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Titus Naikuni said the certification was an important achievement for the airline which had made substantial investments in aircraft service and maintenance.
“The hangar which we set up in 2006 to service our wide body fleet at a cost of Sh536 million ($6.7 million) has generated huge cost savings for us and provided an opportunity for other regional airlines to service their planes more cost effectively,” he explained.
He added that the airline had refurbished the old hangar in line with meeting the European service standards. The increased focus on the African region as an alternative aviation market was also timely and Kenya Airways is positioning itself as the preferred aircraft maintenance provider.
“Kenya Airways has the capability in terms of facilities and qualified personnel to deliver this world class service,” said Mr Naikuni. We expect that maintenance would generate up to 30 percent cost savings for the regional airlines if they use our facilities.
Other than the financial savings, the EASA approval will open up tremendous business opportunities for Kenya Airways. The Technical department will now be able to offer its world class service to operators across the world. The certification will cover five workshops within the Hangar, including Wheel section, ULD (Unit Loading Devices) Upholstery, Gallery Inserts and Oxygen and Hydrostatic testing sections.
He noted that for the airline to receive EASA certification, it had gone through a very rigorous audit exercise by the EASA auditors lasting over two years. “The other advantage of a full certification is that it will ease the process of parts loans exchange and aircraft re-delivery checks since the airline Workshops is EASA 145 approved thus no need to carry out the re-delivery aircraft component checks in another country,” he concluded.
Kenya Airways has also commenced on the process of extending the EASA certification to cover all the areas in the technical department including Base and Line maintenance. This will enhance business opportunities for the Pride of Africa to perform Heavy and Line maintenance checks for other operators at Kenya Airways base in Embakasi.