GI Aviation, the Abu Dhabi-based charter company, is celebrating its newly granted aircraft operatorâs certificate (AOC) from the UAEâs General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA). The operator is hoping to revolutionize business aviation in the UAE with Pilatus PC–12NG single-engine turboprops.
Operating single-engine turboprops commercially under instrument weather conditions is becoming increasingly acceptable worldwideâand popularâlargely attributed to the outstanding reliability of modern engines, avionics and systems. Equally important is the low-cost of operation, when compared with multi-engine jetsâespecially the large, long-range jets that make up so much of the Middle East fleet.
Her Excellency Hafsa Al Ulama, managing director of GI Aviation parent company Global Ideas, said, Our team have been working had this past year to deliver a brand new entry-level service for business aviation in this region, which has, until now, been dominated by larger business jets. We have received significant interest from a number of parties who are keen to fly with us.
GI Aviation (Stand 692) accepted its first PC-12 in the spring, and plans to take delivery of a second in January. The large-cabin aircraft have custom-designed interiors by BMW DesignWorks.
GI CEO Marios Belidis expects charter flights to launch as early as next week with the first PC12–NG based at Al Bateen Executive Airport in Abu Dhabi. We are able to serve all the major business and capital cities within the GCC and surrounding region and will also serve popular resort destination like Sir Bani Yas, Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah, he said. We will, on certain short-distance city pairs, serve as a real alternative to flying first- and business class. Our focus is to ensure that we provide a time- and cost-effective service which is responsive to clientsâ itineraries and requirements, while maintaining the highest standards of quality and safety in our operation.
The initiative is backed by the experience and support of Finland-based Hendell Aviation, which has operated a similar service with PC-12s in its home country since 2013âthe first such service to receive EASA approval. Hendellâs chairman Matti Auterinen, who served as a consultant in the development of the GI Aviation operation, said, The GCAA regulations and requirements closely follow EASA with key differences adapted for the UAE and the region. The very professional framework established in the UAE by authority is strict, but fair.