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Monday, February 17th, 2020

U.S.-EU Trade War Escalates as Trump Increases Tariff on European-built Airbus Jets to 15%

U.S. authorities have announced that the Trump administration will be increasing the 10% tariff on imported Airbus jets imposed in October last year to 15%, commencing March 18. The increase has been approved by the World Trade Organization (WTO) as a punitive and retaliatory measure imposed by the USA on Airbus as a consequence of EU subsidies given to Airbus.

The move comes at a curious time and is seen as quite dangerous for US-EU relations as the WTO is also about to give permission to the EU to impose tariffs on Boeing aircraft, including the 737 Max, 787 and 777 aircraft in May or June as Airbus had lodged a complaint with the WTO alleging US$12 billion per annum damages as a consequence of subsidies provided by the U.S. to Boeing for the development of passenger jets.

In a statement issued by Airbus in response to the second tariff increase, the European planemaker said that:  “Airbus deeply regrets USTR’s decision to increase tariffs on aircraft imported from the EU as well as the decision to maintain tariffs on goods from other sectors,” and that it “ignores the many submissions made by US airlines, highlighting the fact that they – and the US flying public – will ultimately have to pay these tariffs.”

Airbus is hopeful hat once the EU tariffs become applicable, the USTR will change its position on the tariffs that have been levied on European-manufactured Airbus jets.

It is understood the levies do not affect A320s that roll off the final assembly line at the Mobile, Alabama plant, or the A220 being manufactured at the Mirabel, Quebec site in Canada.


AerCap delivers first Airbus A320neo to EGYPTAIR

AerCap has delivered a new Airbus A320neo aircraft on lease to EGYPTAIR, the first of a 15 A320neo Family aircraft deal with the carrier. With this delivery, EGYPTAIR will become the first airline based in mainland Africa to operate the aircraft type.

“We are very pleased to deliver to EGYPTAIR their first A320neo and to be a part of their fleet modernization plan,” said Aengus Kelly, CEO of AerCap. “We wish the EGYPTAIR team every success as they continue on their journey to achieve their sustainable growth ambitions with the addition of the most modern, fuel-efficient aircraft.”

Delta commits US$1 billion to become first carbon neutral airline globally

Starting March 1, 2020, Delta Air Lines is committing US$1 billion over the next 10 years on its journey to mitigate all emissions from its global business going forward. The airline will invest in driving innovation, advancing clean air travel technologies, accelerating the reduction of carbon emissions and waste, and establishing new projects to mitigate the balance of emissions.

“There is no substitute for the power that travel has to connect people, which our world needs today more than ever before. As we connect customers around the globe, it is our responsibility to deliver on our promise to bring people together and ensure the utmost care for our environment,” said Ed Bastian, Delta’s CEO. “The time is now to accelerate our investments and establish an ambitious commitment that the entire Delta team will deliver.”

Delta’s approach to tackling carbon reduction and sustainability reflects the focus and rigor it has become known for, and that it used to build a financially secure airline. This announcement comes as Delta payed US$1.6 billion in profit sharing to employees this Valentine’s Day, and reflects its longstanding approach to placing a high value on supporting all stakeholders and communities worldwide.

The aviation industry accounts for roughly 2% of global carbon dioxide emissions. Delta’s carbon footprint is its largest environmental impact, with 98% of emissions coming from its aircraft.

Trenchard Aviation Group secures FAA certification for Dubai MRO facility

Trenchard Aviation Group, a leading partner in aircraft cabin component design, manufacture, repair and on-wing maintenance, has released that its MRO facility in Dubai, Aero Technics FZCO, has been confirmed as an approved Repair Station by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Serving airlines across the Middle East region, Aero Technics’ facility offers a wide range of services, from repair of crew seats, galley inserts, megaphones, emergency locator transmitter, cabin and flight handsets to the overhaul of oxygen assemblies, fire extinguishers, and emergency evacuation systems including slides, rafts, life vests and smoke hoods.


Alaska and American Airlines announce new West Coast international alliance

Alaska Airlines and American Airlines have announced an alliance to create more choice for West Coast customers. The expanded relationship between the airlines will offer customers several benefits. Alaska Airlines intends to join global airline alliance oneworld® by summer 2021, which will connect Alaska guests to more than 1,200 destinations worldwide.

American will launch the first service from Seattle (SEA) to Bangalore, India (BLR) beginning October 2020. A new American route from SEA to the global business hub London Heathrow (LHR) will begin flying in March 2021.

The airlines will continue their domestic codeshare that offers customers hassle-free booking and travel between the two networks. The codeshare will expand to include international routes from Los Angeles (LAX) and SEA.

Alaska and American loyalty members will enjoy benefits across both airlines, including the ability to earn and use miles on both airlines’ full networks, elite status reciprocity and lounge access to nearly 50 American Admirals Club lounges worldwide and seven Alaska Lounges in the U.S.

The alliance will give West Coast travelers more choices when traveling internationally, offer seamless access across a broader network and provide strategic growth for both airlines.

Pattonair puts cyber security front and centre with latest accreditation win

Derby-based Pattonair has secured the ISO27001 certificate, an internationally recognised standard that helps organisations manage their information security processes while optimising costs.

The achievement serves as a boost for Pattonair’s information security standing, following its significant merger with US-based Wesco Aircraft Holdings.

“We’re pleased to have bolstered our reputation with this internationally recognised standard,” said Pattonair/Wesco President Wayne Hollinshead. “It means we can be confident we are prioritising information security and the continual improvement of the protection mechanisms we have in place.


A330-800 receives joint EASA and FAA Type Certification

The A330-800 has received joint Type Certification from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The aircraft’s certification flight-test campaign was successfully performed by aircraft MSN 1888, which completed the programme in 370 flight test hours and 132 flights since its first flight in November 2018.

The A330-800, part of a true new-generation A330neo family, is the most efficient longest range entry-level widebody and incorporates new Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, a new 3D-optimised wing and new Sharklets using lighter composite materials. Together, these advances bring a significant reduction in fuel consumption of 25% compared with older generation competitor aircraft of similar size.

Certified initially with a maximum take-off weight (MTOW) of 242 tons for a range capability of up to 7,500 nautical miles, the A330-800 will typically seat 220 to 260 passengers in three classes, or up to 406 travellers in a single-class high-density configuration. To date the A330neo Family has won 337 firm orders from 22 operators.

SIA Engineering Company forms line maintenance joint venture in Republic of Korea

SIA Engineering Company (SIAEC) has entered into a joint venture agreement with Air Innovation Korea (AIK), to form a line maintenance joint venture based in the Republic of Korea. Under the agreement, SIAEC will hold an equity stake of 51% in the joint venture, with AIK taking the remaining 49% stake. The agreement and services to be provided are subject to the receipt of regulatory approvals.

The joint venture company will have an initial registration capital of KRW 4,772,000,000, or approximately S$5,525,212. SIAEC will subscribe for KRW 2,433,720,000, or approximately S$2,817,858, in cash and AIK will subscribe for KRW 2,338,280,000, or approximately S$2,707,354, in cash.

This partnership supplements the Aero-K Airlines’ (Aero-K) A320ceo/neo fleet Inventory Technical Management Programme where SIAEC will support the airline for component pooling as well as repair and overhaul management services commencing in March 2020.

The services will be provided for a period of six years for each fleet type. Aero-K, a wholly owned subsidiary of AIK, plans to commence operations in March 2020 from its base in Cheongju International Airport in the Republic of Korea. Aero-K is expected to operate 4 A320 aircraft by the end of 2020, growing to 15-20 aircraft within 5 years.


Virgin Galactic welcomes SpaceShipTwo Unity to Spaceport America, New Mexico

Virgin Galactic has successfully completed another vital step on its path to commercial service, relocating SpaceShipTwo, VSS Unity, to its commercial headquarters at Spaceport America’s Gateway to Space building.

VSS Unity, attached to the carrier aircraft, VMS Eve, made the journey from Mojave, California, where the Company’s manufacturing facilities are based. This captive carry flight provided an opportunity for engineers to evaluate VSS Unity for over three hours at high altitude and cold temperatures, a longer period of time than is experienced during missions to space.

These environmental evaluations of system performance are difficult to replicate at ground level, making captive carry missions a vital component of VSS Unity’s flight test plan. The flight also provided a valuable opportunity to conduct pilot training and familiarization, with veteran Italian Air Force Test Pilot Nicola ‘Stick’ Pecile joining Chief Pilot Dave ‘Mac’ Mackay in the cockpit of the spaceship for the first time. Nicola is the fifth pilot to complete a flight in VSS Unity. VMS Eve was piloted by Mike ‘Sooch’ Masucci and Frederick ‘CJ’ Sturckow.

The move of the spaceship to Spaceport America marks a key step in the relocation of Virgin Galactic’s to the state of New Mexico. In May 2019, Virgin Galactic announced that as part of this move, approximately 100 teammates would move to New Mexico from Mojave, California, Spaceport America would become operational and the vehicles would be transferred to the Gateway to Space. Today, nearly all of those team members have relocated, the spaceport is operationally ready, and both VMS Eve and VSS Unity have now arrived.

Of Virgin Galactic’s total current New Mexico work force, more than 70 team members have been hired locally, the result of a conscious effort to attract New Mexicobased talent.

STS Aviation Services opens new line maintenance station in Humberside

STS Aviation Services (STS), an aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul provider to the global aviation industry, has partnered with Eastern Airways and opens a new line maintenance station at Humberside airport (HUY) in the United Kingdom in direct support of this partnership.

STS’ operations at HUY commenced on February 10, 2020. Initially, the company’s core focus will be to support the first of Eastern Airways’ Embraer 170 aircraft into fleet and future Embraer 190 type additions.


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Manufacturing World
February 26 - 18, 2020 – Makuhari Messe, Chiba-city, Japan

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March 24 - 26, 2020 - London, UK

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