The country’s first aviation maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) company Korea Aviation Engineering & Maintenance Service (KAEMS) started its first service for Jeju Air’s Boeing 737 on Thursday.
KAEMS was launched in July last year on joint investments from seven Korean companies to lessen foreign reliance on aircraft maintenance. The largest shareholder is Korea Aerospace Industries Ltd. (KAI) with a 65.5 percent stake, and other stakeholders include Korea Airports Corp., BNK Financial Group, Jeju Air, Eastar Jet, Hize Aero and Atech.
Korean airlines had to seek foreign hand for MRO service providers in Singapore, China and Mogolia, spending more than 1 trillion won ($880 million) per annum.
Upon the results of KAEMS’s first work on Jeju Air’s B737 which finished 8,000-hour operation, many are likely to take their planes for checkups.
KAEMS aims to receive orders for 19 planes of local low-cost carriers (LCCs) and military jets this year. Eastar Jet’s Boeing 737 passenger jet on March 19 is its next customer.
The company with a 13,200-square-meter maintenance working area plans to expand its infrastructure to accommodate four planes at the same time by 2021.
The country’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport will establish an aviation maintenance complex on an area of 3.1 million square meters in Sacheon, South Gyeongsang Province where KAI and KAEMS are based in. The ministry expects the industrial complex would create 5.4 trillion won worth production inducement effect and add 20,000 new jobs.
By Chun Gyung-woon and Choi Mira
Maeil Business News Korea & mk.co.kr, Feb 22, 2019, https://pulsenews.co.kr/view.php?year=2019&no=109313