UAC launches aero factory

The central city of Danang is on its way to ­becoming an aerospace manufacturing hub for the country thanks in part to the recent ­construction launch of a $170 million aircraft components factory.

The complex construction, invested in by US-based Universal Alloy Corporation (UAC), kicked off in March 2019 and coincided with the 44th ­anniversary of Danang’s liberation. The project is located at the city’s Hi-tech Park, 20 kilometres west of the city ­centre.

According to Kevin Loebbaka, the company’s general manager and ­president of UAC Europe, project ­deployment will be divided into two stages. The first, covering more than 10.9 hectares, is expected to be ­completed in December 2020, whilst the second stage will cover more than 5.8ha and is slated to start in 2023.

In Danang, UAC plans to produce 4,000 out of the five million aircraft devices for export to North America, Europe, and Asia. With the facility in Danang, UAC expects to reach an ­export value of $25 million in 2021, $85 million by 2022, and surpassing $180 million per year after 2026.

UAC plans to recruit 1,200 highly skilled workers in the field of mechanics, electricity, and automation, and 2,000 other personnel to develop a supporting industrial production chain. UAC also looks forward to working closely with technical and ­vocational schools in Danang in the development of the aerospace ­industry.

According to UAC’s executive board, they would strengthen local human resources with plans to employ about 650 people by 2021 and more than 1,000 people by 2023, including hiring and training engineers, production technicians, as well as experts in many fields in Danang.

Additionally, to meet the growing production needs, UAC will develop a satellite business chain to provide auxiliary industrial services and is expected to create jobs for over 2,000 workers indirectly.

At the launching ceremony of the Sunshine Aerospace Components manufacturing initiative, Loebbaka highlighted two main reasons behind UAC’s decision on choosing Vietnam for the project.

“Firstly, more than 30 per cent of the inventory of Boeing and Airbus ­orders is located in the Asia-Pacific ­region. Both Boeing and Airbus are promoting more extensive manufacturing operations in Asia, and have a great interest in the future production site of UAC in Danang,” he said. “Secondly, I have managed UAC’s operations in California for 10 years, and we have a talented Vietnamese workforce at this facility skilled in math, science, and machining. My work experience in California shows me that Vietnam would be UAC’s ­future destination by virtue of human resources. Today, we realise this in Danang.”

Nguyen Nho Trung, Chairman of the ­Danang People’s Council, explained that the Danang Hi-Tsech Park is set to become the nucleus of the city’s northwestern region, and a big science and technology centre in the country, from where the city’s socio-economic development can be boosted significantly. He also stressed the need for UAC to ensure the targeted progress of the project, and that he would give support to investment promotion activities at the park in the forthcoming time.

Founded in 1961, UAC is a global leading manufacturer and supplier of aerospace components. The company, owned by US-based Montana Tech Components, which is headquartered in Atlanta city of Georgia state.

With facilities in North America and Europe, UAC has established long-term contracts with all major ­aircraft manufacturers such as Boeing, Airbus, Embraer, and Bombardier. The company is also one of the three world-leading corporations in supplying special aluminium for ­aircraft production. Today, UAC provides hi-tech ­aircraft components and assemblies to more than 800 companies in North America, Asia, Europe, and South America.

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