Air New Zealand has signed a contract to provide turboprop maintenance to its first international customer Air Calédonie, the domestic airline of New Caledonia.
Under the contract, Air New Zealand Regional Maintenance Limited will carry out heavy maintenance for Air Calédonie’s three ATR72s and one ATR42 aircraft at its base in Nelson.
Air New Zealand Chief Operations Officer Bruce Parton says the airline established Air New Zealand Regional Maintenance Limited as a separate entity last year with a vision to make Nelson Australasia’s preferred turboprop maintenance and overhaul facility so the signing of the first external customer is a significant milestone.
“We’re delighted to announce Air Calédonie as the facility’s first international customer and look forward to welcoming its first ATR42 into the Nelson hangar next week.
“Securing contracts like this one delivers on our growth promise to the region, supports local jobs and helps boost the Nelson regional economy.”
Air Calédonie Chief Executive Officer Samuel Hnepeune says it will be the first time the airline has worked with a maintenance provider under the Air Calédonie quality system, with French civil aviation (DGAC) authorisation.
“The close proximity of New Caledonia to New Zealand, together with the world-class facilities offered in Nelson and experienced turboprop engineers is a good proposition for our airline.
“Our first ATR42 will receive its ten year heavy maintenance check in Nelson so this is a real symbol of trust for our partnership with Air New Zealand Regional Maintenance Limited.”
Air New Zealand Regional Maintenance Limited currently employs around 170 in Nelson performing world-class overnight and heavy maintenance services for Q300 and ATR aircraft. The employee number is also expected to grow by 15 percent over the coming year and is in addition to the 110 Nelson based Air Nelson employees and almost 60 Air New Zealand Nelson Airport staff.
The first Air Calédonie ATR42-500 is due to arrive in Nelson on Sunday, with work to commence the following day.
Air New Zealand also services its own Bombardier Q300 and ATR fleets at the Nelson facility.