Posted on: 14 July 2016 by Mark Howells
Ruili Airlines has placed its first widebody order with Boeing for six 787-9 Dreamliners, valued at US$1.59 billion at current list prices.
The Yunnan-based carrier first announced its intent to order the aircraft in May 2016 at a ceremony celebrating its two-year anniversary.
Ma Zhanwei, chairman of Ruili Airlines, explained the carrier is currently operating a fleet of nine 737s on 16 domestic routes with 56 flights a day, averaging a load factor of 90%. He claimed Ruili is the most profitable of the five airlines operating in the Yunnan province.
Zhanwei also outlined Ruili’s ambitious expansion plans. With a further 14 Boeing 737NGs and 30 737 MAXs already on order, the airline hopes to expand its all-Boeing fleet to 70 aircraft by the end of 2025.“With our base in Yunnan province, Ruili Airlines is positioned to help build Yunnan as the gateway between Southwest China and the rest of the world,” stated Zhanwei. “The right size, long range, competitive fuel efficiency, as well as passenger-appealing edge of the 787-9 make it an ideal fit in facilitating our international expansion plans.”
“We are honoured to expand our partnership with Ruili Airlines,” remarked president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Ray Conner. “The 787-9 would complement Ruili Airlines’ narrowbody fleet and enable them to operate long-haul services to destinations as far as America and Europe, while providing the latest and most advanced technology in passenger comfort.”
Stephanie Taylor, assistant editor, Low-Fare & Regional Airlines / LARAnews.net