Government in talks with Airbus, Boeing for training programmes


NEW DELHI: The government is in discussions with plane manufacturers Airbus and Boeing to set up a “finishing school” to train aircraft maintenance engineering mechanics.

The Civil Aviation Ministry’s move is a part of efforts to address the skilled manpower crunch in the domestic aviation sector, which has been growing at over 20 per cent for the last two years.

“In the form of a partnership with Airbus and Boeing, we will be launching a finishing school. Here, we will have a one-year long course where diploma holders can seek an entrance, get training and enhance their employability,” Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha said today.

Along with Airbus and Boeing, the ministry expects to open 7-8 such centres across the country, which he said would help plug the gaps in the skill development chain.

“We expect several airlines to be a part of this, which will guarantee these students an employment after completing a structured apprenticeship programme,” Sinha said.

In due course, such a system would also help in increasing the demand for Indian Aircraft Maintenance Engineers (AMEs) globally, he added.

While the domestic aviation sector has been registering double digit growth, airlines are grappling with talent crunch, especially in terms of pilots and skilled mechanics.

The domestic aviation sector would grow three times its current level in the next 15 years and it is “very essential to focus on skill development as human resource is a bottle neck”, the minister said.

Speaking at an event on SpiceJet’s AME apprenticeship programme here, he also said that the long-term growth rate for domestic volume in the aviation sector has been around 12-13 per cent.

SpiceJet CMD Ajay Singh said the Indian aviation sector has witnessed the fastest growth globally at the rate of around 25 per cent.

“Airlines have placed an order for hundreds of planes. So, there is a massive employment opportunity in the aviation sector. This programme will benefit SpiceJet but this is also a national asset,” he said.

Minister of State Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Rajiv Pratap Rudy, who was also present at the event, offered to support SpiceJet’s apprenticeship programme under the National Apprenticeship Scheme.