Swiss MRO provider SR Technics is to build a new hangar in Malta to expand base-maintenance operations on the Mediterranean island.

In 2017, the Zurich-based company reached a tentative agreement with Malta Enterprise and Malta Industrial Parks to evaluate expansion of an existing facility.

SR Technics now says it will build a "modern multi-bay hangar facility for narrow- and widebody aircraft", with capacity for six single-aisle aircraft at a time. Support for the project will be provided by the two local agencies.

Construction is scheduled to begin this year, with the aim of completing an initial four-bay facility by November 2019.

Until the new site is available, SR Technics will, from November 2018, use a third maintenance bay in a temporary hangar next to its existing facility, it says.

The MRO provider intends to hire around 350 new employees at the site, adding to the current 260-strong workforce.

Operations in the new facility will "initially" be focused on support of Airbus A320-family and Boeing 737NG aircraft, SR Technics says.

Its present maintenance business is concentrated on the two single-aisle types. Operations began in 2010 in a two-bay hangar, with EasyJet as launch customer.

A total of more than 250 aircraft have been serviced at the Maltese facility, says SR Technics.

Chief executive Frank Walschot says Malta is "ideally located to further grow our aircraft maintenance business in the region" and that the new hangar "enables us to continue providing efficient and high-performance maintenance services".

In 2016, China's HNA Group became a majority shareholder in SR Technics by acquiring an 80% stake from Abu Dhabi's investment fund Mubadala.