Lufthansa Technik opens $30-M maintenance hangar for A380

Lufthansa Technik Philippines (LTP), one of the largest providers of aircraft maintenance services in Asia, opened yesterday its new $30-million Airbus 380 maintenance hangar, its third in Manila for work on widebody aircraft.

Officials said this marks a milestone in Philippine aviation history as it makes the country one of the few locations in the world capable of providing maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services to the world’s largest commercial aircraft.

With this step, the company is preparing for the technical support of the world’s largest commercial aircraft. LTP, an Airbus specialist, will start checks and cabin modifications for the A380 in April.

The company, a joint venture between Germany’s Lufthansa

Technik (51 percent) and Philippine MacroAsia Corp. of the Lucio Tan Group (49 percent), invested $30 million in the construction of the new hangar, which measures 8,500 square meters. The new hangar offers space to work simultaneously on one widebody and two narrowbody aircraft.

“With the new hangar, we’ll be able to keep up with the increasing demand for technical services for long-haul Airbus aircraft, particularly in the Asian market,” according to Lufthansa Technik AG’s chairman of the executive board, August Wilhelm Henningsen. “By adding A380 capability, it underscores Lufthansa Technik Philippines’ role as global competence center for Airbus overhauls.”

Operating the new hangar will also mean adding 400 high-technology and high-skills jobs to the existing 2,700 jobs in LTP.

“The opening of the new hangar serves to reaffirm the Filipino aviation workers’ place among the world’s best and underscores LTP‘s long-term plans of operating in the Philippines,” LTP chairman Washington SyCip added.

In preparation for the capability expansion, LTP employees have completed trainings which consisted of A380-specific course in Lufthansa Technical Training Philippines, the on-site training center in Manila, and several months of on-the-job training performing A380 C-checks at Lufthansa Technik in Frankfurt. In these exposures, Filipino engineers and mechanics yet again benefited from the exchange of knowledge and skills within the Lufthansa Technik Group.