Airbus swoops to bag $6.5bn worth of aircraft orders from Vietnamese airlines

European aircraft builder gains off back of French president's visit to South East Asian nation as raft of purchase agreements signed for new jetliners.
An Airbus A320. The European aircraft maker has secured major orders for the model and others with carriers in Vietnam. Matthew Lloyd / Bloomberg
An Airbus A320. The European aircraft maker has secured major orders for the model and others with carriers in Vietnam. Matthew Lloyd / Bloomberg

Airbus has won about US$6.5 billion of orders from carriers in Vietnam, a nation that is likely to rank among the top 10 fastest-growing aviation markets in the next two decades.

State-owned Vietnam Airlines signed a deal to buy 10 A350 wide-bodied aircraft worth about $3.1bn in list prices, while its affiliate Jetstar Pacific Airlines agreed to purchase 10 A320s for about $980 million, Airbus said. VietJet Aviation, Vietnam’s only private airline, signed a $2.39bn order for 20 more A321 planes, the low-cost carrier said.

The deals were signed on Tuesday in Hanoi in the presence of the French president François Hollande, who is currently visiting the South East Asian country where VietJet estimates air travel has expanded at least 20 per cent in the past three years. Vietnam Airlines is revamping its fleet as it adds international routes while also fending off competition from VietJet, which started operations in December 2011.

The A321s VietJet signed to purchase will be delivered starting 2017 through 2020, according to the carrier. Late last year at the Dubai Airshow, VietJet had agreed to buy 30 Airbus A321 planes in a deal worth $3.6bn at list prices.

As recently as May, the private operator said it would buy 100 Boeing 737-Max 200 jets in an order worth $11.3bn when the US President Barack Obama visited Vietnam.

With more than 250 flights a day with 50 routes in Vietnam and across the region to countries such as Thailand, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, China, Myanmar and Malaysia, VietJet will probably surpass the national carrier as the nation’s biggest domestic carrier this year, according to Capa Centre for Aviation.

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Published: September 6, 2016 04:00 AM

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