Cobham expands Australian operation with BAe jets

London
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Cobham Aviation Services Australia has leased two more jets from BAE Systems, paving the way for the multinational company to expand its air service offering to the county's fast-growing mining and resources sector.

The first aircraft - a BAe 146-300QT - will be deployed principally for fly-in-fly-out services to mining companies in western and southern Australia. The four engined-aircraft - which was recently converted from a passenger to freighter aircraft at Aerostar in Bacau, Romania - will also be used for scheduled freight services.

An Avro RJ100 - the third deployed by Cobham's Australian subsidiary - is scheduled for delivery this month, leading to service entry later this year. This passenger aircraft will be used for a variety of support contracts to carry mining staff to remote exploration and extraction sites around the region.

The demand for services from within Australia's huge mining and resource industry has persuaded Cobham to bring forward delivery of its second leased RJ100 from 2011 to later this year.

Cobham operates a further 13 BAe 146 Series 100, 200 and 300s on behalf of multinational mining companies on fly-in-fly-out contracts.

Meanwhile, BAE Systems is to reveal later this year the third of five interior concepts commissioned by UK consultancy Design Q for its Avro Business Jet. The first two designs - Explorer One and Explorer Four - were unveiled in May.