Vietnamese conglomerate FLC buys 24 planes from Airbus for launch of new airline

By VnExpress, Reuters   March 26, 2018 | 10:47 pm PT
Vietnamese conglomerate FLC buys 24 planes from Airbus for launch of new airline
A Bamboo Airways' plane up in the air. Photo by Xuan Hoa.
Bamboo Airlines will be taking to the skies in 2019.

A Vietnamese corporation has signed a deal with Airbus to buy 24 airplanes for the launch of a new airline in 2019. The pact was struck on Monday in Paris during Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong's  official visit to France.

FLC Group signed the memorandum of understanding with Airbus to buy the A321NEO airplanes for the upcoming Bamboo Airways. 

Bamboo Airways will use jets from a third party before deploying the 24 airplanes ordered from Airbus. The carrier will focus on connecting Vietnam to international markets, along with domestic destinations.

Airbus Chief Commercial Officer Eric Schulz said the A321 is the frontrunner in the market’s mid-range segment, with the lowest operational costs. Airbus is proud to play an important role in developing the start-up carrier, he added.

“We trust the A321NEO to be the optimum option for Bamboo Airways for its comfort, efficiency and capacity,” said Trinh Van Quyet, chairman of FLC Group.

Launched in 2010, the A321 is the largest of the A320 family. It can carry up to 240 passengers and traverse 4,000 nautical miles.

During the same day in Paris, Vietnam Airlines signed a deal with Air France Industries KLM Engineering & Maintenance for a $500 million maintenance contract, the carrier said in a statement. The unit will handle maintenance of Vietnam Airlines’ 787 GEnx engines for 12 years.

Party General Secretary Trong's visit marks the 45th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

FLC Group is one of Vietnam’s largest conglomerates, involved in real estate, hotel construction and mining. The establishment of Bamboo Airways marks the group’s newest venture in the transport industry.

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