Ethiopian Airlines ditches plan for smaller jets as long-haul flights gain
The CEO of Africa’s biggest airline says privatisation will likely happen at various operating units rather than an outright stake sale
Addis Ababa — Ethiopian Airlines Group has shelved plans for a fleet of smaller jetliners as gains in demand suggest the routes where they would be deployed would be better served using larger aircraft. Africa’s biggest airline had been looking at Bombardier’s C Series aircraft — since taken over by Airbus and renamed the A220 — together with Embraer’s E195. An order, which had been expected at this week’s Farnborough airshow, is now off the agenda, CEO Tewolde GebreMariam said. "We have decided to suspend the evaluation of the 100-seater regional aircraft acquisition project since the market size of the selected regional routes is growing faster than expected," he said. Boeing 737 jets from the fleet will be used while the airline studies passenger trends. Tewolde also said there was no prospect of an order for the Airbus A350-1000 wide-body or Boeing’s rival 777X at the Farnborough expo, with Ethiopian still evaluating the two planes for its latest long-haul requirements. A purcha...
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