New Delhi– Professional services firm KPMG in India on Monday said that Indian aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) market is expected to touch $5.2 billion by 2036.

“With an expected growth in fleet size of Indian carriers to 1,740 aircraft in the next 20 years, the Indian MRO market is pegged at an estimated value of USD 5.2 bn by 2036,” the professional services firm said in its background paper on the MRO sector.

“At the same time, as the fleet ages, the requirements for advanced checks will continuously increase.”

The firm unveiled its background paper on MRO sector titled ‘IndiaMRO Aerospace & Defence 2016’ at India MRO Aerospace and Defence 2016 being held here.

The background paper on MRO sector revealed that airlines have shifted their focus on reducing their expenses incurred on MRO, which accounts for 12-15 per cent of their operating expenses.

According to industry sources, just 10 per cent of the MRO work for domestic scheduled carriers is carried out in India.

Approximately seven per cent of airline revenues is being transacted for maintenance in foreign currency. Indian private carriers are heavily reliant on foreign MRO service providers for engine management contracts, component contracts and heavy base checks.

“The National Civil Aviation Policy (NCAP 2016) and the opening up of the defence MRO opportunities have provided the much-needed policy support for the Indian MRO sector,” said Amber Dubey, Partner and Head, Aerospace and Defence, KPMG in India.

“Under the RCS, provision of low cost, high quality MRO services to small fleet operators is critical.”

“Structural reforms, growing demand for air travel, expanding aircraft fleet and diffusion of air transport services into the hinterlands of India provide the ideal platform for the Indian MRO industry to transform from being mere line or base maintenance providers to value providers.”

According to Pulak Sen, founder Secretary General of MRO Association of India, till now the Indian passenger carriers have been sending their aircraft overseas for MRO work even when the country possesses reasonably good capabilities.

“Shortcomings if any can be plugged through a win-win collaboration between airlines and MRO providers,” Sen said.

“India has the potential of evolving into a major MRO Hub within a short span, fuelled by the growing fleet, availability of engineering talent and the forward looking NCAP 2016.” (IANS)