|Anne Brachet, Executive Vice President AIR FRANCE KLM Engineering & Maintenance, and CEO of Vietnam Airlines sign the contract in the presence of General Secretary Nguyễn Phú Trọng and President of the National Assembly of France. — Photo VNA
HÀ NỘI — Vietnam Airlines Corporation and Air France Industries KLM Engineering and Maintenance (AFI KLM E&M) signed a long-term flight hour support contract for maintenance of Boeing 787-9 in Paris on Monday.
The contract, worth more than US$500 million, was signed in the presence of General Secretary Nguyễn Phú Trọng and President of the National Assembly of France Francois de Rugy. The contract is part of the framework to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Việt Nam and France.
Under the contract, AFI KLM E&M will oversee the maintenance of 20 GEnx engines, including 16 engines for eight operating planes and four others for reserve, for 12 years. The firm will also provide access to spare engines for Vietnam Airlines to guarantee seamless continuity in its operations.
GEnx engine installed on the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner is one of the most advanced turbojet engines in recent times. It is made with new-generation material through a design process that reduces weight and improves power. GEnx engines are also eco-friendly, reducing fuel consumption and carbon dioxide by 15 per cent each (compared to CF6 engines on Boeing 767s).
CEO of Vietnam Airlines Dương Trí Thành said the agreement was significant as it would contribute to enhancing the long-term relationship and expanding cooperation in other facets between Vietnam Airlines and AFI KLM E&M.
“With the success of providing spare parts and supplies to Vietnam Airlines’ Boeing 787-9 fleet as well as GEnx engine maintenance, we are confident that AFI KLM E&M will operate well for the Boeing 787-9 fleet of Vietnam Airlines, helping the company to operate more efficiently long-haul international and domestic flights with the quality of four-star service. The contract affirms our commitment to provide the best experience to our passengers,” said Thành.
Vietnam Airlines and AFI KLM E&M have been working together for the past 25 years. The French firm has provided complete maintenance service for Vietnam Airlines’ GE90 engine of the former Boeing 777-200ER fleet. In 2015, the two sides agreed that AFI KLM E&M would provide spare parts and supplies’ support for Vietnam Airlines’ 787 fleet.
The co-operation reaffirms the long-standing relationship between Vietnam Airlines and Air France. Since 1994, the two firms have been working together on the operational side, with partnerships in the field of aircraft maintenance, crew training and transfer of technology of 10 new A320s, which were among the most modern type at that time. In October 2017, the two companies signed a comprehensive strategic partnership allowing the two airlines to optimise operational efficiency, service quality and expertise in technical maintenance of aircraft equipment.
In the development strategy of the modern fleet, Vietnam Airlines has ordered 19 Boeing 787s, which will be delivered gradually by 2021. Currently, the firm operates 11 Boeing 787-9 aircraft between Hà Nội and HCM City and to six international destinations — London (England), Frankfurt (Germany), Narita (Japan), Beijing (China), Sydney and Melbourne (Australia) and Moscow (Russia).
Vietnam Airlines, a member of Skyteam Alliance, is the flag carrier of Viet Nam, serving 90 routes to 20 domestic and 29 international destinations, with an average of 400 flights per day. During the 20 years of its development at a two-digit annual growth rate, Vietnam Airlines has become a major airline in Asia’s aviation market with modern aircraft, such as Boeing 787 Dreamliner, Airbus A350-900 XWB, Airbus A330 and Airbus A321. It has been certified as a Four-Star Airline by the prestigious Skytrax for two consecutive years.
AFI KLM E&M is a major multi-product MRO (Maintenance, Repair, Overhaul) provider. With a workforce of over 14,000, AFI KLM E&M offers comprehensive technical support to airlines, ranging from engineering and line maintenance to engine overhaul, aero structure and fan thrust reverser support, as well as management, repair and supply of aircraft components, structured around a powerful logistics network. AFI KLM E&M supports almost 2,000 aircraft operated by 200 major international and domestic airlines. — VNS