Saudi Arabian Airlines has signed a SR10 billion contract with Airbus to purchase 58 aircraft with advanced facilities, including A320s, A321s and A330s as part of the company's efforts to modernize its fleet and meet global challenges.
Khaled Al-Molhem, Director General of the national carrier, said the new planes would enable Saudi Airlines to provide better services to its passengers. "We intend to modernize our fleet by purchasing the most advanced planes available in the world," he said.
The Saudia chief spoke about growing competition in the air transport industry. "Saudi Airlines has been making concerted efforts to maintain its leading position among the world's major airline companies," he pointed out.
Al-Molhem was recently in the French city of Toulouse, along with other Saudia executives, to receive two A320 planes, which it bought from Airbus. "We have made advanced preparations for the new fleet of aircraft by training our pilots and other crew members," he said.
"The A320 is the right aircraft for our ambitious modernization plans and offers unbeatable operational efficiency, proven reliability and the high level of cabin comfort expected by our customers," Al-Molhem added.
The CFM56 powered A320 will be deployed on routes in the region, to Europe and to the Indian Subcontinent, from Saudia's hubs in Riyadh and Jeddah. Depending on configuration, the A320 fleet will seat between 112 and 132 passengers in two classes.
"We congratulate Saudi Arabian Airlines on taking delivery of their new A320, with 21 more directly purchased aircraft to follow. The A320 is and will remain for many years to come the benchmark in the single aisle aircraft category, which is why it is such an attractive asset for both our valued operators and leasers," said Airbus President and CEO Tom Enders.