Bhopal Airport is all set to become the Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) Facility of tier-II cities in central India.
The ground breaking ceremony of the MRO center took place at Bhopal Airport on Wednesday (5 October).
The project involves making two MROs in an area of about 5,600 sqm at an investment of Rs 30 crore. The construction is expected to be completed within a year.
The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) had identified Bhopal airport as one of the eight new destinations for attracting investments to set up MRO facilities. MRO is a kind of servicing centre for aircraft.
Once operational, the Bhopal MRO hub can carry out repair and maintenance on different aircrafts simultaneously as well as big aircraft like Boeing 737. Till now such a center exists only at some major airports including Delhi, Mumbai and Hyderabad.
The selection of Bhopal as MRO hub is due to its advantageous central location in India, which implies aircraft can easily reach from anywhere in the country.
The parking charges for aircraft at this airport is also less as compared to other airports. Further, the state-of-the-art runway at the Bhopal airport will ease the landing for the aircrafts coming for maintenance.
The MRO at Bhopal will be a big boost for the city.
“The MRO setup is close to the operational area of the state hangar. Once completed, the MRO will provide business opportunities for the citizens of Bhopal and also emerge as a big opportunity for the economic progress of Bhopal,” said Ram Ji Awasthi, Raja Bhoj airport director.
Towards advancing the vision of India becoming a global hub for MRO spelt out in the May 2020 Aatmanirbhar Bharat reforms, the Civil Aviation Ministry announced a new MRO Policy on 1 September 2021.
Accordingly, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) had initiated tenders in October 2021 for leasing its land at Bhopal Airport to establish MRO facility on Design, Build, Operate, Maintain and Transfer (DBOMT) basis.
Against the bids received, AAI issued Letters of Intent (LoI) to the selected bidders for three sites of Bhopal on 22 February 2022.
The selected bidders will be responsible for creation of all necessary infrastructure for successful commissioning within two years from issue of award and commencement of MRO facility from that site with all the required approvals.
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