China Eastern Airlines just announced that they have placed an order for 80 new Boeing 737 aircraft. For Boeing the decision years ago to look East for more opportunities is paying off.
The Shanghai-based carrier, which earlier this year agreed to buy 70 new single-aisle aircraft from Airbus, has now sought to balance out its acquisition strategy by placing an order for 80 B737s.
The Boeing deal comprises both the standard model and the new fuel-efficient B737 MAX.
The deal is worth more than US$8 billion at current list prices and becomes the largest ever purchase of single-aisle jets by a Chinese airline.
“We look forward to making history with China Eastern as they are poised to make the largest purchase for single-aisle airplanes by a Chinese airline,” said Ihssane Mounir, Boeing’s vice president of sales & marketing for Northeast Asia.
“We share an enduring partnership with China Eastern and we are excited to see that the 737 family of airplanes will play an important role in their continued success.”
The order will be posted on Boeing’s Orders & Deliveries website once all contingencies are cleared.
Following this latest deal, February’s purchase of 70 Airbus A320neos, and other outstanding orders, China Eastern now expects to take delivery of more than 80 A320s and 115 new B737s in the next decade.
These will add to the airline’s existing fleet of approximately 320 single-aisle aircraft.