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Article from TNU DECEMBER 2023

Dubai Airshow roundup

It may have been last month but the Dubai Airshow fits TNU’s maxim and is one for the future.  The large number of orders announced, and the turnout from the industry showed international air transport business is clearly in a robust state and marching forward.

This year TNU was not represented but Flight Global was, from which most of this piece was gleaned.  Also absent was former Qatar Airways boss Akbar Al Baker, whose other current responsibilities still include Chairman of oneworld airline alliance and board membership of IAG and Heathrow.  He is no longer Chairman of Qatar Tourism and Hamed International Airport.

Home airline Emirates led the way with 95 orders for the much delayed Boeing 777X and 15 more Airbus A350-900s. President, Sir Tim Clark said that the A380 would be around for a long time.

“We have to keep a careful eye on [the supply chain], so we’re cannibalising some of the early aircraft and storing the parts”, Clark says. “We’ll try to keep 116 going for as long as we can. Back-end of the next decade, it’ll drop to 90”. 

There was an interesting order for 30 787-9s from Emirates’ sister carrier and narrowbody operator Flydubai, marking its expansion into widebody services.

Middle East carriers placed commitments for 158 aircraft that included fresh commitments from EgyptAir, Royal Jordanian Airlines and Royal Air Maroc.

“By 2028, we have ambitious plans to reach a fleet up to 125, both narrowbodies and widebodies”, said Chairman Yehia Zakaria. “For the network we hope to reach up to 100 destinations by 2028”.

Other orders include Abelo, a leading turboprop lessor, for a firm commitment of ten ATR 72-600, along with options for an additional ten. In July 2022, Abelo had placed an order for ten ATR 72-600 and confirmed a deal for ten ATR 42-600S – Short Take-Off and Landing version.

A date for your diary: The next Dubai Air Show will be held 17–21 November.

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