MONTREAL, April 24 /CNW Telbec/ - Air Canada today announced it has
exercised existing options and purchase rights for 23 Boeing 787 aircraft,
bringing its total firm orders for the aircraft to 37 from the 14 originally
announced, with deliveries starting in 2010. Air Canada thus becomes the
largest North American customer for the Dreamliner, the world's most advanced
"As we take delivery of new, fuel efficient aircraft, we are removing
older aircraft from the fleet to create one of the youngest, most efficient,
customer-friendly fleets in the world," said Montie Brewer, President and
Chief Executive Officer. "The Boeing 787 aircraft features better operational
performance in terms of speed and flight range, providing us with the ability
to serve new markets that could not be previously served in an efficient
manner. With new Boeing and Embraer aircraft entering the fleet, we will
continue with our overall strategy of matching capacity with demand, which has
produced more than three consecutive years of record breaking load factors."
The revised agreement includes options for 23 Boeing 787 aircraft for a
total of up to 60 Boeing 787 Dreamliners. At the same time, Air Canada has
reduced its original Boeing 777 firm order and the related capital commitment
by two aircraft which were due to be delivered in 2009. The carrier is
scheduled to take delivery of a total of 16 Boeing 777s, in addition to one
leased from International Lease Finance Corporation, by the end of 2008. Air
Canada received its first Boeing 777 on March 30..
Air Canada's major fleet renewal program will see the carrier's existing
Airbus A340 and A330 and Boeing 767-300 and 767-200 aircraft replaced by
modern, fuel efficient and more customer friendly aircraft. The revised order
will enable the replacement of substantially all of the carrier's B767 leased
aircraft at the time of the expiry of the aircraft's operating leases. The
carrier estimates fuel usage and maintenance costs for a Boeing 787 aircraft
to be approximately 30 per cent less than that of a Boeing 767-300.
Air Canada continues to make progress on subleasing and/or returning
leased aircraft considered redundant to its fleet requirements and the airline
expects to meet its target to remove from service approximately 23 aircraft in
2007, including eight widebody and 15 narrowbody aircraft.
Carrier receives loan guarantee commitments from the Export - Import Bank
of the United States
Air Canada also announced that the Export-Import Bank of the United
States has provided the carrier with a Final Commitment for loan guarantees
for seven Boeing 777 aircraft which will be delivered in 2007 and a
Preliminary Commitment covering the remaining Boeing 777 aircraft which will
be delivered in 2008 and 14 Boeing 787 aircraft which will be delivered in
2010 and 2011.
Montreal-based Air Canada provides scheduled and charter air
transportation for passengers and cargo to more than 170 destinations on five
continents. Canada's flag carrier is the 14th largest commercial airline in
the world and serves 34 million customers annually with a fleet consisting of
335 aircraft. Air Canada is a founding member of Star Alliance, providing the
world's most comprehensive air transportation network.
For further information:
For further information: Isabelle Arthur (Montréal), (514) 422-5788;
Peter Fitzpatrick (Toronto), (416) 263-5576; Angela Mah (Vancouver), (604)