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Emirates orders 36 A380s worth US$ 16 billion

Posted 18 January 2018 · Add Comment

Emirates has announced a US$ 16 billion (AED 58.7 billion) deal for 36 additional Airbus A380 aircraft, with 20 firm orders and 16 options. Emirates’ A380 fleet operates both GE and Rolls-Royce engines, and the airline is evaluating engine options for its latest A380 order.

The additional Airbus A380s will be delivered to Emirates from 2020 onwards.  Together with the airline’s 101-strong A380 fleet and its current order backlog for 41 aircraft, this new order brings Emirates’ commitment to the A380 programme to 178 aircraft, worth over US$ 60 billion. 

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, said: “Emirates truly represents Dubai’s spirit of growth, innovation and resilience. It also epitomises the city’s increasing role in connecting the world in terms of people, capital and information flows. This deal reflects Emirates’ confidence in shaping the future, and its commitment to advancing Dubai’s vision to grow further as a world-class destination and aviation hub.”

His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group signed the memorandum of understanding (MOU) today with John Leahy, Chief Operating Officer Customers, Airbus Commercial Aircraft at the airline’s headquarters in Dubai.

Sheikh Ahmed said: “We’ve made no secret of the fact that the A380 has been a success for Emirates. Our customers love it, and we’ve been able to deploy it on different missions across our network, giving us flexibility in terms of range and passenger mix.

He added: “Some of the new A380s we’ve just ordered will be used as fleet replacements. This order will provide stability to the A380 production line. We will continue to work closely with Airbus to further enhance the aircraft and onboard product, so as to offer our passengers the best possible experience. The beauty of this aircraft is that the technology and real estate on board gives us plenty of room to do something different with the interiors.” 

"I would like to thank Emirates, Sheikh Ahmed, Tim Clark and Adel Al-Redha for their continued support of the A380,” said John Leahy, Chief Operating Officer Customers, Airbus Commercial Aircraft. “This aircraft has contributed enormously to Emirates' growth and success since 2008 and we are delighted that it will continue to do so. This new order underscores Airbus’ commitment to produce the A380 at least for another ten years. I’m personally convinced more orders will follow Emirates’ example and that this great aircraft will be built well into the 2030s.”

Analyst Saj Ahmad commented: “This deal is not yet firm as it is an MoU. It more than likely will be firmed up in time given how utterly desperate Airbus is to bolster the weak and abysmal A380 backlog.  

“These planned newer A380s will ultimately replace the earliest ones in Emirates' fleet. However, Airbus is still facing financial ruin on this loss making programme.”

Ahmad added: “Emirates would have been offered very favourable terms from Airbus, especially since no one else much cares to buy or operate the A380 - so for Emirates, it makes sense to procure more while Airbus has the production line humming along on life support.

The longer term future of the A380 remains in total jeopardy - even if this order was double the size, the omens would remain unchanged.”

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