Saudi airline ‘flyadeal’ to operate all Airbus fleet in the future

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Saudi Arabian budget airline ‘flyadeal’ will operate an all Airbus A320 fleet in the future, it said in a statement on Sunday, months after it announced it was reconsidering a Boeing order.

The airline is to take delivery from 2021 of 30 A320neo jets that were ordered by its parent, state-owned Saudi Arabian Airlines, at the Paris Air Show in June, it said in the statement.

“This order will result in flyadeal operating an all- Airbus A320 fleet in the future,” it said.

The status of the Boeing order was not immediately clear. ‘Flyadeal’ and Boeing did not immediately respond to emailed requests for comment.

‘Flyadeal’ Chief Executive Con Korfiatis said in April a decision on whether it would proceed with an order for 30 Boeing 737 MAX jets was “imminent.” It was reconsidering the order after two MAX aircraft fatally crashed in Ethiopia in March and Indonesia in October.

“We understand that ‘flyadeal’ will not finalize its commitment to the 737 MAX at this time given the airline’s schedule requirements,” a Boeing spokesperson said.

The order, which included additional purchasing options for 20 MAX jets, was worth $5.9 billion at list prices, according to Boeing.

The two disasters killed a total of 346 people, triggered the global grounding of the aircraft and wiped billions off Boeing’s market value.

The 737 MAX was grounded worldwide after the second crash and regulators must approve the fix and new pilot training before the jets can fly again.

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