Although Middle East MRO expenditure accounted for only $1.5 billion in 2005, or 4% of the world market, the region's 6.6% predicted annual growth in MRO spend will see that figure hit $2.8 billion by 2015, according to aviation consultancy Aerostrategy.

That figure includes business aircraft maintenance and outfitting, a market dominated by European suppliers, although they are beginning to open their own outlets in the region handling up to medium-interval maintenance. However, they will not deal with major overhauls.

Aerostrategy's other findings include:

  • The Middle East currently outsources 65% of its airframe heavy maintenance, the highest proportion of any region in the world.
  • While large Middle East carriers have a broad range of airframe line and heavy maintenance capability, there is little involvement in the engine and components sector.
  • With orders representing 26% of the existing Middle Eastern fleet - a similar proportion to Asia-Pacific but behind India's 42% - there will be increasing pressure to develop MRO capability to cope with new aircraft technology.
  • The growth of low-cost carriers - typical outsourcers of MRO - will help drive the market in the region.

Source: Flight International