China Southern Airlines has finalised an order for 38 Boeing aircraft in a deal worth $5.65bn at list prices as it pushes forward its dual hub strategy.
The order is for 30 Boeing 737-800s narrow bodies and eight 777-300ERs wide bodies. Five 777-300ER and 12 737-8 aircraft will be delivered in 2019 and three 777-300ER and 18 737-8 aircraft will be delivered in 2020.
The carrier, which is China’s largest airline by passenger numbers, said the fleet expansion would “enhance the competitiveness” of the business.
It added the order would also help its dual hub strategy to expand its presence at its home hub of Guangzhou Baiyun Airport and Beijing Daxing International Airport, a huge airport currently being built in Beijing.
Beijing Daxing International Airport is due to open in 2019 at a cost of about $13bn. SkyTeam alliance members China Southern Airlines and China Eastern will each be allocated 40 percent of capacity at the new hub.
Once operational, the airport will therefore provide both China Southern Airlines and China Eastern with more slots in Beijing, offering greater access to lucrative North American routes. In addition, SkyTeam partners will gain better access to China’s capital city.
China Southern Airlines currently operates 700 passenger and cargo transport aircrafts, including Boeing 787, 777, 747, 757 and 737 as well as Airbus A380, A330, A321, A320 and A319.
A statement from Boeing said: “We are pleased that China Southern Airlines has selected more Boeing 777-300ERs and the popular 737 MAX. This order will be posted to Boeing's Orders & Deliveries website once all contingencies are cleared.”