Ukraine International Airlines (PS, Kiev Boryspil) is close to setting up an own maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) unit, the carrier's CEO Yuri Miroshnikov told Russian Aviation Insider.

The new unit is provisionally called MAU Technics, referring to the name of the airline in Ukrainian - Mizhnarodni Avialiniyi Ukrayiny. It is already undergoing certification according to EASA Part 145 requirements in Ukraine and will later need to be approved by the EASA. The whole process can take up to eighteen months. The company is considering finding a partner to jointly develop the business.

Once operations, MAU Technics will service both UIA's and other carrier's aircraft.

Since 2004, UIA itself is a Part 145 certified company and can perform line maintenance and heavy checks on the airline's fleet of B737s. It was the first company to perform a heavy D-check maintenance on a B737 in CIS countries.

While the new unit will take over all UIA's employees currently performing MRO tasks, it will not solve the fundamental problem related to the company's B767-300s and B777-200, due to arrive next year. Currently, there is no hangar big enough for these wide-body aircraft at the airline's main base in Kiev Boryspil. The company has been considering building one but had problems obtaining land due to red tape, Russian Aviation Insider reported.

UIA is also interested in the nearby Gostomel airport as a possible base for MAU Technics. The airport hosts Antonov Design Bureau facilities but currently only receives freight operations. Miroshnikov conceded to Russian Aviation Insider that a lot of investment would be needed from the airport's side before it could become a MAU Technics base.