Thursday, June 28, 2012 -
Construction begins Friday on a new French-Kazakh helicopter assembly and maintenance factory near the international airport in the Kazakh capital Astana.
The joint venture between France’s Eurocopter company and Kazakh state-owned Kazakhstan Engineering has exclusive rights to build and sell Eurocopter-145s throughout the countries of the former Soviet Union and adjacent territories.
Eurocopter Kazakhstan Engineering JV will roll out 10 aircraft per year, said a director of the firm.
“Apart from assembly and maintenance, the center will be providing training services to both pilots and engineers. This will be the first ever training center in the CIS to provide trainings in Russian language,” company vice president Kairat Tilebaldinov said, according to the Tengrinews.kz news site.
The French side is putting up half the project investment funding of $14 million.
Kazakhstan Engineering is a holding company comprising 25 defense industry firms and wholly-owned by Kazakh sovereign welfare fund Samruk-Kazyna.
Eurocopter has cornered 43 percent of the world’s helicopter market, with operators in 149 countries.