Talks with Ukraine on the possibility of an Antonov aircraft maintenance facility being set up in Malta are well underway, Prime Minister Joseph Muscat announced this afternoon.

The Prime Minister was addressing a press conference with the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, who is in Malta on a two-day visit.

“We had discussions on the opportunity and real possibility of an Antonov facility opening a logistics base here that would offer supplement maintenance, repair and operations facilities, and strengthening further Malta’s position in aviation maintenance,” Dr Muscat told journalists.

Mr Poroshenko expressed confidence that Antonov would follow in the footsteps of Lufthansa which has also set up a base in Malta, adding that being so close to North African capitals would be an asset.

“Together we can make Malta a hub for aviation logistics,” the president said.

The Prime Minister and Mr Poroshenko also spoke about the possibility of Malta serving as agricultural hub in order to efficiently distribute Ukrainian grains.

Mr Poroshenko arrived in Malta earlier today.

The official welcoming ceremony was held on the Palace Square, where President Poroshenko was greeted by President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca.  

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