Air China is again seeking to inject its in-house aircraft maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) business into Ameco Beijing, the joint venture that it owns with Lufthansa Technik (LHT), industry officials say.

LHT continues to resist the move, partly because it would dilute the German company’s share of Ameco, now 40%, say the officials. Talks in 2011 to combine the two entities ended without an agreement. 

A further concern is that Air China’s maintenance operation, Air China Technics, lacks Ameco’s efficiency and skills. Access to management skills of foreign partners has been a major driver for Chinese airlines setting up maintenance joint ventures.  

Ameco, which has been bolstered by Air China’s growth and specific initiatives such as cabin upgrades, says it expects more activity this year following a 13% rise in man-hours last year.

“The airframe workload shows a strong growing trend this year at Ameco,” says the company, noting that it has customers from North America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

The company began installing a fourth tail dock in its largest hangar on July 1. The hangar can accomodate four Boeing 747s.