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|Airbus to double staff in Bangalore, outsource more|
|Bangalore, Oct 1 (PTI)|
Bullish on its commercial aircraft sales in the country, Airbus plans to more than double headcount at its India engineering centre here over the next three years.
| The centre that focuses on high-end engineering analysis and design, currently has 180 staff and this strength is expected to go up to 400 in 2013, Airbus President and CEO Tom Enders said today .|
"This engineering centre has a great future", he said. "...the activities that are performed here are increasingly important, particularly modelling and simulation."
Enders, who was pleased at the increase in air traffic growth in India by 16 per cent this year, said the company was not only keen to maintain marketshare but also expand it.
According to company officials, some 180 Airbus aircraft in the fleets of Indian carriers represent nearly 60 per cent of the nation’s total.
Quoting an Airbus forecast, Enders said the demand for new aircraft in India over the next 20 years is projected to be about 1,000.Head of International Cooperation,India, South East & North East Asia, Srinivasan Dwarakanath said the cumulative turnover of work generated in India in the next 10 years was expected to be about USD one billion.
Airbus India President Kiran Rao said his company would deliver between 20 and 30 aircrafts per year in the next five years. From next year, Airbus expects "reordering phase" of Indian carriers after a "very quiet" 2008, 2009 and 2010.
"It's already started. We have started to see not so much ordering to buy but ordering to lease", he said, adding Indian carriers were expected to follow the leasing pattern in the next couple of years as they had been through difficult financial situation.Meanwhile, by the end of 2010, every Airbus A320 Family aircraft will be partly made in India.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/industry/8038768/Airbus-looks-to-India-to-bridge-skills-gap.htmlAirbus looks to India to bridge skills gap
Airbus, the world's biggest aeroplane maker, will carry out a greater proportion of engineering work in India in the future as a direct result of a dearth of qualified engineers in the UK, Germany and France.
The company's board will decide this week whether to go ahead with its next development programme, a new engine for the single-aisle A320 plane that generates much of Airbus's profit.
The programme, known as NEO (new engine option), may yet be put off or abandoned because of a lack of engineers, said Tom Enders, chief executive.
The company's technical expertise is tied up with getting the A380 superjumbo ready for full production and developing the new A350, made with a greater share of composites than any of Airbus's previous planes.
"Airbus has never made a secret that our engineering resources are stretched thin," Mr Enders said during a two-day visit to Airbus's Indian operations in Bangalore last week.
"We're taking this decision very seriously because we cannot afford that other programmes, especially the 350, should suffer."
There is an 80pc chance that Airbus will go ahead with the new engine, according to reports last week, but the plan still needs approval from Airbus executives and EADS, its parent company.
At its base in Bangalore, Airbus has 160 engineers working on the A350 and A380 programmes in conjunction with staff in France, Germany and Britain.
The company plans to have 200 staff at the engineering centre by the end of the year and 400 by 2013.
India produces around 350,000 engineering graduates a year, about 25pc of which Airbus describes as "employable".
"I don't think 400 is going to be the final number, there is a huge pool of talent we can tap into," said Mr Enders. "In terms of the work we sub-contract, there's a lot more to come."
In the past, most of the work done for Airbus by external suppliers has been making parts of the airframe, and while some manufacturing work is now being done in India, it is the engineering and technology base that is more attractive, Mr Enders said.
"IT, simulations, technical publication - all these are things which India is particularly good at," he said.
Engineering staff in India are cheaper to employ than in Europe, although the company declined to say what the difference in average salaries is.
Airbus expects to do around $1bn (£632m) of business in India in the next decade, with local companies such as Tata, Mahindra and state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics. The last two are also joint-venture partners of BAE Systems.
Airbus has no plans for now to build a final assembly line in India like the one which opened in Tianjin, China in 2008.
Airbus expects India to need around 1,000 new planes over the next 20 years, compared with 3,000 in China. Air traffic has expanded by 16pc in India this year.
Mr Enders said jobs at Airbus's manufacturing and design sites in Filton and Broughton, Toulouse, and Hamburg are not as risk from work being done in India for now.
"I will not guarantee jobs but right now our immediate concern is that we ramp up production and find good people."
Confirmation de la livraison de 20 A380 cette année
Enders also reaffirmed that Airbus will meet its target of delivering 20 A380s this year and that order intake for the year would top 400 units, having reached 379 already by the end of September. But Enders would not be pinned down on whether Airbus would match Boeing in having a positive book-to-build ratio this year; that target is harder for Airbus to achieve, since it is slated to deliver around 510 aircraft in 2010.