Alhamdan: “The new agreements reinforces the national carrier’s strength and raises its operational efficiency.” | Aljasser: “In just two years SAUDIA has signed agreements to acquire 113 new aircraft. The new aircraft are 15 Boeing 777-300ER’s, 13 Boeing 787’s and 35 Airbus A320/A321neo’s. In an unprecedented move in the national carrier’s history, it will receive 30 aircraft next year.”
His Excellency the Minister of Transport, Chairman of the Board of General Authority of Civil Aviation, Chairman of the Board of Saudi Arabian Airlines, Mr. Sulaiman Alhamdan announced the approval by SAUDIA’s Board of Directors of SAUDIA’s fleet plan, part of which acquiring additional 63 modern airplanes; Alhamdan further stated that “it is my pleasure that while we celebrate our National Day to announce that the national carrier has acquired 63 new aircraft as part of its fleet expansion and modernization plan reflecting the strength of our national economy.”
He stressed that this new acquisition will support the national carrier’s operating plans for domestic and international markets and its ambitious transformation program that was approved and supported by the Board as many of its initiatives and the objectives of its strategic plan are being carried out.
Mr. Alhamdan sent his heartfelt congratulations to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and HRHthe Crown Prince and HRH the Deputy Crown Prince on the occasion of the 86th National Day.
SAUDIA’s Director General Engineer Saleh Aljasser elaborated that this new acquisition includes the following aircraft:
15 Boeing 777-300ER’s
13 Boeing 787’s
35 Airbus A320/A321neo’s
Mr. Aljasser emphasized that these aircraft are in addition to the 50 Airbus aircraft (A330 Regional’s and A320’s) which SAUDIA has signed for last year in Paris under the patronage of HRH Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, the Deputy Crown Prince and Minister of Defense and His Excellency the President of France, and we have begun receiving some of these aircraft last month.
He further added that “SAUDIA within two years has signed agreements to acquire 113 aircraft, in line with its fleet renewal and expansion initiative which is part of SAUDIA’s Transformation Program that was launched last year to double in 7 years what has been achieved in 70 years, and includes several other initiatives starting with investment in our people, upgrade operational efficiency and effectiveness, focus on total customer experience, optimize the network and creating distinctive products for our guests. Several of the initiatives have already been executed and some are in the process so that by 2020 we will reach our targets of a fleet of 200 aircraft, 1000 daily flights and 45 million annual passengers.”
Mr. Aljasser declared that 2017 will witness the delivery of highest number of new aircraft (30) in the history of the airline, 22 of which are wide-body aircraft (777-300ER’s/787-9’s/A330R’s); while within the last 4 months of this year 2016 we are receiving 25 aircraft, 21 of which are wide-body’s in addition to the 4 aircraft we received earlier this year bringing the total deliveries in 2016 to 29 aircraft.
He further added that as part of the fleet renewal we are taking several aircraft out of service according to a phase-out plan that takes in consideration the delivery of new aircraft; four 747-400 aircraft have been phased-out this year, and we have started the phase-out of the ERJ-170 fleet of 15 aircraft and this will be completed by end of this year in addition to the phase-out of 5 aircraft from our 777-200 fleet of 23 aircraft and the remaining 18 will be phased-out before the end of 2017. We have also scheduled the phase-out of our early generation of A320’s of 28 aircraft over the next two years.
Mr. Aljasser emphasized that these agreements to acquire new aircraft was being accompanied by other initiatives to train and prepare our national manpower to operate and maintain this fleet, this is reflected in the agreement SAUDIA signed with the Ministry of Education for 5000 scholarships to send Saudi students to stud abroad aviation sciences and maintenance, this is in addition to theSAUDIA other training programs that end with employing the trainees.
Mr. Aljasser extended his thanks to the Chairman and Board Directors for adopting the Transformation Program and the Strategic Plan (SV2020), and the support and follow-up on the execution of the initiatives of the Transformation Program to improve the corporate’s performance and its subsidiaries and SBU’s, increase the operational efficiencies and improve the services and develop its products offerings; emphasizing that this program for fleet expansion is the biggest in the company since its inception over 70 years ago and this prosperous times of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques is a witness to the achievements taking place to develop “SAUDIA” to be in line with the major developments taking place in all other sectors of our great country.
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