Fri, Jul 13, 2012 - Page 14 News List

TransAsia bulks up its fleet with orders for 29 new planes

By Amy Su  /  Staff reporter

TransAsia Airways Corp (TNA, 復興航空), one of three listed airlines in Taiwan, has inked a deal with European turboprop aircraft manufacturer ATR to purchase eight ATR 72-600 aircraft, a company statement said on Wednesday.

The new aircraft included in the US$210 million deal will be delivered in phases between 2014 and 2018, with the air carrier owning an option for one additional airplane, the statement said.

“We plan to deploy the new aircraft on our domestic routes,” TransAsia chairman Vincent Lin (林明昇) said after signing the deal on the first day of Farnborough International Airshow in England.

The 72-seat ATR 72-600 is light, safe and fuel-efficient, which makes it perfect for short-haul operations, Lin said, adding that the new aircraft would consume 25 percent less fuel compared with other models.

The carrier has ordered 29 new planes. Other than the eight ATR 72-600 aircraft and the additional option, there are 18 Airbus 321 series and two A330-300 planes still to be delivered.

The scheduled delivery of the first ATR 72-600 aircraft in 2014 would increase the airline’s seat capacity by about 20 percent per year in the future, TransAsia said.

TransAsia posted NT$4.52 billion (US$150.6 million) in revenue in the first six months, up 11.2 percent from a year earlier, the highest growth level among domestic listed airlines, the company said in its stock exchange filing.

TransAsia shares slid 1.2 percent to NT$16.4 on the main bourse yesterday, compared with the TAIEX’s 1.75 percent drop, Taiwan Stock Exchange data showed.

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