The ceremony of laying the foundation stone of Aérolia plant took place, Friday, April 30, 2010, in the M’ghira Industrial area. Several Tunisian officials and Aérolia executives attended the event. Among them, Dominique Alexandre, Aérolia Tunisia CEO who answered our questions. Interview:
What are the advantages attached to your setting-up in Tunisia?
Our presence in Tunisia is part of the industrial and commercial strategy we are developing both in France and abroad. We chose Tunisia following a comparison between several options from different countries and within a major order from Tunisiair.
Our choice was also focused on Tunisia due to its proximity, the French language, and a very good high-level education system. These assets have led to the launch of this project here in Fouchana on the M’ghira site.
What is its impact on the economic development?
This impact is positive for two reasons: for Aérolia on one hand and for Tunisia on the other. This creation, this deployment is in line with a «win-win” approach.
First, it is part of our strategy to deal with commercial competitors, for example, the leading American Spirit Aerosystems. Second, it aims at growing and ranking among the Top Three global aero structures.
Aérolia must have the same economic and competitiveness levers than its competitors and partners. So, starting from our French roots, we engaged in an international expansion to meet economic needs and aircraft manufacturers proximity.
Our customers include Airbus which is our top priority, Airbus is, indeed, our major customer today, and we continue to serve it in proper compliance with its expectations.
On the international market, our ambition is also to make Boeing, Bombardier, Embraer or Dassault, for example, our new customers in the future. It is up to us to attract them.
What is more precisely the impact on Tunisia?
This is the second economic effect of our approach, which is the positive impact for Tunisia.
This effect lies at the economic and social levels, especially in the current context of financial crisis for our industry. Our commitment has remained unfailing for 18 months. With this new economic activity, there are 50 MD Euros that will be invested by Aérolia in M’ghira.
On this industrial site, we will take up along with our partners an area of 200,000 sq. with 90,000 devoted to Aérolia. This park will, by 2014, provide as many as 750 jobs for Tunisian personnel while our partners also will hire 750 employees on parcels of land that you have seen earlier.
We are pleased to associate Tunisia in our development. Complementing our French plants, Toulouse for Engineering, Méaulte and St. Nazaire for the production, this M’ghira plant will be part of our development in line with the expectations of our customers, our shareholders and our partners on the field.
I am proud of our teams both in France or here in Tunis.