Etihad Airways has marked two significant milestones in Manchester, officially launching a new line maintenance facility and double-daily services to the city.
From today, Etihad operates 14 non-stop Manchester-Abu Dhabi return flights, with onward connections to more than 60 global destinations across the Etihad network.
The opening of the new Manchester maintenance facility this afternoon is the airline’s sixth outside Abu Dhabi, and has created seven new jobs for locally skilled workers. Etihad’s existing facilities are in Bombay, Dublin, Lahore, London-Heathrow and Sydney.
Etihad Airways has employed a team of four aircraft engineers and three aircraft mechanics, with over 50 years’ combined experience, to manage the new maintenance operations at Manchester Airport.
The new facility is equipped with the latest technology and will perform all scheduled and non-scheduled line maintenance. Services to be undertaken in Manchester include transit, daily and weekly checks, scheduled engineering services and fault repairs for the aircraft systems and in the cabins.
Commenting at the opening of the new facility, Etihad Airways Vice President for Maintenance, Manchester-born Jeff Wilkinson, said: “We are delighted to open this line maintenance facility here in Manchester, especially on the day when we’ve started our double-daily services to Abu Dhabi. Our investment in Manchester illustrates the remarkable growth of the airline, our ambition to bring key services in-house in markets we operate to, and also to recruit locally.”
Mr Wilkinson said: “Over the coming months, Etihad will seek approval to enable this new facility to offer maintenance services to other airlines with the same aircraft types as Etihad Airways. We will continue to work with Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies, in the United Arab Emirates, for more extensive maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services for our fleet of aircraft.”
Andrew Harrison, Manchester Airport’s managing director, said: “We are proud to welcome this new facility on the day that Etihad has doubled the frequency of its service.”
“These initiatives reflect Etihad’s consistent commitment to the north of England, which will enable individual travellers and local businesses to use Manchester as a convenient hub to travel throughout the world. Etihad is a hugely important player in our long-haul network and we welcome its new staff to Manchester Airport.”