Boeing has leased some land at Nagpur airport in India to build a new maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) centre in joint-venture partnership with national carrier Air India.

Boeing senior VP Dinesh Kesker told local news media that Boeing has signed a 99-year lease with landlord Maharashtra Airport Development Company (MADC) for a 50-acre plot at Nagpur airport in central India. The Indian province of Maharashtra owns MADC.

Kesker says by year-end tenders will go out to construction firms to help build the hangars and buildings for the new MRO firm.

He says the aim is for the MRO to be operational by the end of next year.

The new MRO will work on narrowbody and widebody aircraft and is a joint venture between Boeing and Air India.

The repair station is part of a maintenance and training condition in Air India's December 2005 order for 27 Boeing 787s, 23 Boeing 777s and 18 Boeing 737-800s, the largest commercial aircraft order in India's civil aviation history.

Because it has taken three years for Boeing to move ahead with the MRO, there had been some concerns in India that the project may have stalled indefinitely.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news