Dubai’s Emirates has signed an agreement to purchase 40 Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner aircraft for a list price of $ 15.1 billion, according to its CEO Ahmed ben Said Al-Maktoum.
Emirates is already the largest customer of the Boeing 777. It has 165 copies in its fleet and has firmly ordered another 164.
At a press conference, Cheikh Ahmed said that this announcement, made on the first day of the Dubai Airshow 2017 international air show, brings to about $ 90 billion the total amount of orders from Boeing, the main competitor of the European manufacturer Airbus .
The delivery of the Dreamliner should begin in 2022.
Emirates, the largest airline in the Middle East, is also the world’s largest customer of the Airbus giant aircraft, the A380. Its fleet has 100 copies and the Dubai company has firmly ordered 46 others.
“We have come to the conclusion that the Boeing 787-10s are the best choice for us,” said Cheikh Ahmed, as speculation was booming in recent days over a new A380 order from Airbus.
An Emirates-Airbus deal is still possible in the coming days, an industry source said.
“Emirates orders today (from Boeing) will be delivered from 2022, accompanying the company well beyond the 2030s. Some of them will be for replacements (of aircraft) to maintain a young and efficient fleet and others will fuel our future growth, “he said.
“We see the 787 as a great addition to our 777 and A380 fleet, giving us more flexibility to serve a range of destinations as we build our global network,” added Cheikh Ahmed.
Kevin McAllister, president of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, welcomed Emirates’ choice for the 787-10 Dreamliner, which “extends our long-standing partnership” with the Dubai airline, which will “maintain many jobs in the United States “.
Later, McAllister signed an agreement to sell five Boeing 787-8 aircraft to Azerbaijan Airlines for about $ 1 billion (list price). This company already has two 787-8 aircraft.
Last Thursday, Emirates announced a net profit more than doubled in the April-September period, attributing this strong increase to cost-cutting measures and a favorable exchange rate.
Emirates reported net income of $ 452 million, up 111% over the same period in 2016. A figure higher than the company’s $ 340 million profit for the full year ended 31 March 2017.