SR Technics has started construction of a Maltese hangar which is to become the Swiss maintenance provider's airframe MRO centre.

A first section of the six-bay hangar, which will include "significant backshop facilities", is scheduled to be completed by the beginning of 2020, says SR Technics.

It expects that the facility "will enable SR Technics to continuously provide high-quality aircraft maintenance and cabin modification services" on Airbus A320-family jets and Boeing 737s.

The MRO provider last year disclosed its decision to discontinue airframe maintenance operations at its Zurich-headquarters, deeming that location to be uncompetitive for such services.

Chief executive Frank Walschot describes that decision as a difficult one, but foresees that the new hangar will allow SR Technics to grow its existing airframe maintenance operation in Malta.

"We remain committed to provide leading quality and service levels for all our customers and I'm confident that our expansion in Malta will support that commitment," he states.

In 2010, SR Technics opened a base-maintenance operation in a two-bay legacy hangar at Malta airport.

UK low-cost carrier EasyJet has been a major customer for that operation.