FlightSafety, Bombardier join forces for training
Feb. 11, 2014, Singapore - Bombardier Aerospace announced today it has co-signed a letter of intent (LOI) with Nantong Tongzhou Bay Aviation and FlightSafety International to establish a local training centre for pilots of its Q400 NextGen aircraft.
Under the LOI, Bombardier would provide planning support for aircraft training activities, and FlightSafety International, Bombardier's authorized provider of turboprop pilot training, would supply and operate a Q400 aircraft full-flight simulator at the new training centre to be set up with the support of Nantong Tongzhou Bay Aviation in China's Jiangsu province.
The LOI was signed during Asia's largest aviation trade event, the 2014 Singapore Airshow.
"This agreement is aimed at building a strong foundation of support for the development of turboprop aviation in China," said Michel Ouellette, President, Customer Services & Specialized and Amphibious Aircraft, Bombardier Aerospace. "Developing a local presence is at the core of Bombardier's customer support strategy and, as sales momentum for Bombardier aircraft builds in China, we are steadily increasing our footprint in strategic locations across the country."
"We are pleased to support Bombardier Aerospace and Nantong Tongzhou Bay Aviation in the establishment of a new training centre in China," said David Davenport, senior vice president, FlightSafety International. "FlightSafety is committed to provide operators of Bombardier aircraft with the highest quality training using advanced-technology full-flight simulators at conveniently located facilities."
"With its regional aviation model set to revolutionize air service in Jiangsu, one of China's most affluent and fast-growing provinces, Sutong Airlines (ST) has long ago realized the importance of the localization of pilot training capabilities for its own aircraft fleet," said Zhou Binzhen, president, Nantong Tongzhou Bay Aviation Industry Co., Ltd. "Through joined efforts with Bombardier and FlightSafety International, Sutong aims to build up its own pilot training programs and capabilities and become self-sustained in terms of pilot pipeline. We believe the setup of such a training centre in Jiangsu province will introduce something new in pilot training in China and Asia, which may benefit not only ST Airlines but also the general pilot training market in this region."
The signing follows a landmark agreement, announced in December 2013, in which Nantong Tongzhou Bay Aviation declared its intention to acquire 30 Q400 NextGen aircraft to support the forthcoming launch of a new airline, based in Nantong, Jiangsu Province. Sutong Airlines plans to operate an all-Bombardier fleet of Q400 NextGen airliners when it starts operations in 2015.