Coopesa, in Costa Rica, will transform passenger planes to cargo ones for Boeing. This is to keep up with demand for remodeling 40 aircraft, something the company used to do only in three places, all in China.
This is the first of this kind of work in Latin America. Boeing expects a wave of cargo aircraft orders because of the growth in merchandise shipments from electronic commerce and the need to supply chains affected during the pandemic years.
Coopesa was founded back in 1963. It’s executive director explained that they train low-income youth to become aviation technicians. They obtain certifications by the Federal Aviation Administration of the United States and the European Aviation Safety Agency. They are highly qualified. There are already 830 technicians and the plan is to add another 500.
After a Boeing 737-800 reaches 20 years of service, it is withdrawn for safety reasons but can still be used for another 20 years if it’s modified and certified to move cargo. This is done by removing the seats and making a special cargo door.