U.S. and European companies, eager to capitalize on the continued strong demand for private aviation in the Middle East, are opening new support facilities, establishing joint ventures and expanding their service offerings.

Jet Aviation is among the companies offering a growing array of support services in the Middle East. Jet Aviation Dubai recently received FAA approval to perform base and line maintenance on Gulfstream G200s, and the company expects to win FAA’s OK to work on G150s by the end of the year. That means the company will be authorized to perform base and line maintenance on the entire fleet of Gulfstream business aircraft. By year’s end, Jet Aviation Dubai also plans to begin offering maintenance support for Airbus Corporate Jetliners.

In 2012 Jet Aviation Dubai plans to expand its FBO services to include round-the-clock dispatch services, such as arranging overflight and landing permits, fuel purchasing, emission trading support and continuous monitoring.

Meanwhile, Jet Aviation Abu Dhabi’s facility at Al Bateen Executive Airport will temporarily begin performing maintenance in 1,200 sq. meters (12,917 sq. ft.) of hangar space while its dedicated 2,400-sq.-meter (25,833-sq.-ft.) hangar undergoes a full refurbishment, which is set to be finished by April 2012.

Another company offering expanded maintenance services in the region is Lufthansa Technik. The German company and NAS-Holding, the Saudi Arabian aircraft management and fractional company, are joining forces to offer technical services for various customers in Saudi Arabia, including VIP aircraft operators.

AgustaWestland and Abu Dhabi Aviation, the largest commercial helicopter operator in the Middle East, also have established a joint venture to provide maintenance services. AgustaWestland Aviation Services LLC will sell helicopter spare parts and accessories and offer helicopter/component repair and overhaul, customization, modifications and upgrades. Officials say the joint venture’s activities eventually could encompass special configuration development, component production and helicopter assembly.

Because of the anticipated need for more pilots in the Middle East, several Western training organizations are partnering with regional companies to offer more training options.

For example, CAE will provide pilot training services on eight business aircraft types for Arabian Jets, a private aircraft management company based in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. CAE has also recently concluded a long-term agreement with Qatar Executive (Qatar Airways’ corporate jet subsidiary) to provide training for Qatar’s Bombardier Global Express XRS and Challenger 605 pilots.

Separately, Jeppesen has won a new contract with Dubai-based Emirates Aviation College to provide ab initio pilot-training courses.

While many Middle East operators are known for flying larger business jets, several manufacturers of smaller aircraft are establishing a greater presence in the region.

Eclipse Aerospace recently won type certificate validation of its Total Eclipse jet from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and has already secured commitments for five aircraft from customers who plan to register their aircraft in the UAE.

Pilatus Aircraft has designated AMAC Aerospace as its authorized and exclusive PC-12 sales center in the Middle East. AMAC will start sales activities by Jan. 1, operating out of a sales office in Beirut, Lebanon. A PC-12 maintenance center in Istanbul, Turkey is slated to open during the second half of 2012.

Meanwhile, Hawker Beechcraft Corp. (HBC) is expanding its sales and support office in Dubai “to provide advice on the full Hawker Beechcraft product lineup and turnkey solutions for aircraft ownership and support.” Sean McGeough, HBC president for Europe, Middle East and Africa, says, “We view the Middle East, Dubai in particular, as one of our key international growth markets.”