Monday, July 15, 2024

Why Amravati? Air India Building South Asia’s Largest FTO

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Air India, a Tata Group subsidiary, is set to establish South Asia’s largest Flying Training Organisation (FTO) at Amravati in Maharashtra, marking a significant milestone as India’s first airline-operated FTO.

The initiative is part of a broader strategy to enhance pilot training capacity in India, aligning with efforts by the Maharashtra Airport Development Company (MADC). Located at Amravati’s Belora airport, the FTO is expected to commence operations by the first quarter of the fiscal year 2025-26 (FY26).

Addressing the Pilot Training Demand The establishment of this FTO comes at a crucial juncture as Indian airlines prepare to accommodate a rising number of passengers. Air India and other carriers have placed substantial aircraft orders to meet future demands, highlighting the urgent need for trained pilots.

Air India plans to graduate 180 commercial pilots annually from the FTO, significantly contributing to bridging the gap in India’s aviation sector.

Operational Details The FTO will feature a fleet comprising 31 single-engine and three twin-engine aircraft dedicated to training purposes. Spanning across 10 acres, the facility will include state-of-the-art amenities such as digitally equipped classrooms, hostels, an advanced operations center, and an in-house maintenance facility, ensuring comprehensive training and operational efficiency.

Air India FTO Amravati Belora Airport
Air India will establish South Asia’s largest Flying Training Organization (FTO) in Amravati, Maharashtra

Long-term Commitment Air India has secured a 30-year tender from the Maharashtra Airport Development Company to establish and manage the training institute, underscoring its commitment to long-term aviation training in the region.

Anticipated Benefits Campbell Wilson, MD and CEO of Air India, emphasized the role of the FTO in enhancing India’s aviation self-reliance and creating opportunities for aspiring pilots across the country.

Sunil Bhaskaran, Director of the Aviation Academy at Air India, highlighted the adoption of a world-class curriculum at the FTO, comparable to leading global aviation schools.

Swati Pandey, Vice Chairman & Managing Director of MADC, emphasized the economic benefits of the FTO, including the creation of over 3,000 new jobs in the aviation sector and a substantial contribution to Maharashtra’s GDP over the next decade.

The initiative is expected to inspire Maharashtra’s youth to pursue careers in aviation, fostering a sense of pride and ambition within the state.

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