Home' Asian Aviation : AAV November 2010 Contents AsianAviation | NOVEMBER 13
Hong Kong Airlines has finalised a contract
with Airbus covering a firm order of 10 more
A330-200 long range aircraft and converted an
existing order for 15 A330s to the A350 XWB.
Both agreements were previously
announced upon signature of an initial
Memorandum of Understanding during July's
Farnborough Air Show.
Deliveries of the newly
ordered A330-200s will
begin in 2012, while the
carrier's first A350 XWB
will arrive in 2018. The
aircraft will be operated
across a long-haul network
now being developed by
the airline to link Hong
Kong with a wide range of
destinations in Europe and
made on 13 October,
"underscores our plan to
operate an extensive long
haul network," says Yang
Jian Hong, president of Hong
Kong Airlines. "The A330-200 is the perfect
platform for us to develop these services,
while the all-new A350 XWB will become
our new flagship towards the end of this
Hong Kong Airlines has now ordered
a total 33 widebody aircraft from Airbus,
comprising 18 A330s and 15 A350 XWBs.
The carrier also has 30 single-aisle A320
aircraft on firm order for future delivery.
The A330 is one of the most widely used
widebody aircraft in service today. To date,
Airbus has won more than 1,100 orders for
the various versions of the aircraft and over
700 A330s are currently flying with more
than 80 airlines worldwide.
The A350 XWB family of twin-aisle twinjets
will seat between 270 and 350 passengers
in typical three-class layouts. Scheduled for
initial entry-into-service in 2013, the type
has to date won 573 firm orders from 35
customers worldwide. -- Andrzej Jeziorski
Thai Airways International may acquire as many
as 77 new Boeing aircraft under a major fleet
modernisation programme that will begin in
2015, lasting through to 2026.
According to a senior official at Thai
Airways in Bangkok, the airline is evaluating
a proposal that was submitted by Boeing in
late September. It covers ten 747-8s, 30 787
Dreamliners, 18 777-300ERs, 17 737NGs and
two 747-8 freighters.
The official says that Thai Airways'
management hopes to firm up the aircraft
acquisition programme before political interests
intervene to kill or delay the plan. "There has
been too much political interference in the
airline's operations, which has left the carrier
with several aircraft types, engines and also
cabin interiors," the official says.
Thai Airways currently operates 18 747-
400s, three 777-300ERs, six 777-300s, 14
777-200ERs/200s, nine 737-400s, six Airbus
A340-600s, four A340-500s, 12 A330-300s,
17 A300-600s, and two ATR72-500s.
As part of a plan to cut operating costs, the
carrier will reduce the number of aircraft and
engine types it operates over the next four
years. Thai will phase out 26 aircraft, including
its 17 ageing A300s. The 747-400s and 737-
400s that are due to be phased out will be
gradually retired from the fleet.
The A300s, which are more than 20 years
old, were decommissioned in stages in 2008
and 2009, but were brought back into the fleet
in January 2010 due to a nine-month delay by
Koito Industries of Yokohama, Japan, in the
supply of economy-class seats for five of the
carrier's eight new A330-300 twinjets, ordered
An earlier batch of seats supplied by
Koito failed a safety audit carried out by the
European Aviation Safety Agency and Japan's
regulatory body. Thai Airways said it will begin
legal proceedings against Koito for the delay
and additional costs involved in sourcing from
Separately, Thai Airways has opted to lease
eight 777-300ERs instead of acquiring the
aircraft outright. The carrier will lease the
aircraft from BOC Aviation, with deliveries
scheduled between August 2012 and 2013.
The aircraft will be leased new to Thai
Airways for 12 years and will be configured in
a two-class cabin layout, with 40 business-class
flat-bed seats and 306 economy class seats.
The aircraft will be deployed on European
routes now operated by 747-400s.
Three 777-300ERs leased from Jet Airways
will be returned when the lease expires in
2012. -- William Dennis
NEWS IN BRIEF
CHINA SOUTHERN Airlines is planning to begin
operating a new service between Guangzhou
and the Russian capital, Moscow, via Urumqi.
The airline will operate the service daily from 31
October, using Boeing 757-200 twinjets. There
are currently no non-stop airline services between
Guangzhou and Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport.
China Southern is a member of the SkyTeam
global airline alliance, which also includes
Aeroflot, AirFrance-KLM, Korean Air and Delta Air
Lines among its members.
Hong Kong Airlines confirms Airbus A330, A350 XWB orders
Thai Airways International may acquire up to 77 Boeing jets
The order covers ten additional A330-200s and 15 A350 XWB twinjets.
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