Singapore places £7.5bn Airbus order

Singapore Airlines has ordered five more Airbus A380s and a further 20 A350s worth £7.5 billion for additional capacity growth and fleet renewal.

Airbus has agreed to acquire SIA’s five A340-500s as part of the deal.

They will be removed from service in the fourth quarter of 2013 resulting in the suspension of non-stop flights between Singapore and Los Angeles and Singapore-Newark, “in the absence of replacement aircraft in the SIA fleet with sufficient range and operating economics”.

SIA chief executive Goh Choon Phong said: “Although disappointing that we will be halting these services, we remain very committed to the US market.

“Over the past two years we have increased capacity to both Los Angeles and New York by deploying A380 superjumbos on flights via Tokyo and Frankfurt.

“We will also continue to explore additional options to enhance our US services.”

The order, which will see deliveries due to begin in 2017, comes as the airline marked the fifth anniversary of services by A380 superjumbos.

SIA has operated the world’s largest commercial aircraft since October 25, 2007, when the first A380 was flown from Singapore to Sydney on a special charity flight.

The airline now operates 19 A380s to 10 destinations, including Frankfurt, Hong Kong, London, Los Angeles, Melbourne, New York, Paris, Sydney, Tokyo and Zurich.

SIA has carried more than 9 million passengers over 24,000 A380 flights and clocked approximately 240,000 hours in five years.

It already has firm orders for 20 A350s for delivery from 2015.

Goh said: “This major order will provide us with additional growth opportunities and is consistent with our longstanding policy of maintaining a young and modern fleet.

“It demonstrates our commitment to the Singapore hub, and our confidence in the strength of the market for premium full-service travel.

“The aircraft will enable us to further enhance our network, providing more travel options to our customers. They will also feature the next generation of in-flight cabin products to keep us at the forefront of airline product innovation.”

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