Tel Aviv: Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) is further expanding its conversion business. The Israeli company IAI on April 17 signed an agreement with Sharp Technics K (Sharp) and Incheon International Airport Corporation, to establish a facility for the passenger-to-freight conversion of Boeing 777-ERSF (Big Twin) aircraft.
The signing ceremony took place at South Korea’s Incheon International Airport, in the presence of senior officials and representatives of each of the companies. Within the framework of the collaboration agreement, IAI plans to convert Boeing B777-300ER aircraft, starting in 2024.
IAI’s Aviation Group recently successfully completed a test flight of a 777 after it underwent passenger-to-cargo conversion, the first of its kind in the world. At the same time, the company is in the final stages of receiving the necessary licensing approval, a process that is expected to be concluded within the year.
Setting up passenger-to-freight conversion facilities around the world is required due to the expected demand for wide-body freighter aircraft capable of long-haul flights, such as the 777, which after conversion will be able to carry loads of up to 100 tons. According to analysts’ reports, the combination of these capabilities, with the significant fuel saving that the aircraft will permit – will make it one of the most popular freighter aircraft in the world, which will join IAI’s family of converted aircraft, which today includes the Boeing 747, 767, NG737, and the Classic 737.
IAI’s President and CEO, Boaz Levy said, “The signing ceremony held today reflects our close technological partnerships and business collaboration with the Republic of Korea. ROK and IAI are natural partners, sharing values and a bright vision of mutual technological innovation. We are happy to promote local partnerships, and work together on developing advanced solutions for present and future changing needs. IAI offers a wide variety of defence solutions and technological advancements for the region and for the Republic of Korea.”
Executive VP and General Manager of IAI’s Aviation Group, Shmuel Kuzi stated, “Today’s signing of the agreement with Sharp and Incheon International Airport represents a direct continuation of the many collaboration agreements already existing between IAI and South Korean companies, and underscores the confidence that the company has in South Korea’s ability to set up a conversion facility within the required timetable, while training the necessary personnel. IAI’s Aviation Group is a world leader in the field of wide-body passenger-to-freight aircraft conversions, and operates several such lines in Israel and around the world. I look forward to expanding our strategic cooperation with Korean companies and with the South Korean government.”