Air show sets record as deals cross Dh75 billion

DUBAI — Dubai Air Show 2005, which has witnessed deals worth more than Dh75 billion in the first three days, is set to post a new record in total order intakes when it closes tomorrow.

By Isaac John

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Published: Wed 23 Nov 2005, 10:24 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 5:25 PM

Industry watchers predict that the ninth edition of the world's fastest growing aerospace exhibition will see the inking of a few more billion dirhams worth of orders in the next two days.

Dubai 2005, which has been touted as a battleground for the world's two aircraft manufacturers, lived up to its image as the two giants fought it out for the $9.6 billion mega order from Emirates.

While Boeing bagged that star prize on the first day, its European rival Airbus was not far behind when it announced $2 billion worth of orders with two Kuwaiti airline companies on the same day.

The Chicago-based aerospace company, which has been on a roll lately by racking up orders at a phenomenal pace for its 787 Dreamliner, managed to sell 42 Boeing 777 Worldliners to Emirates to take its total order book tally to nearly 800 this year or 65 per cent of the global aircraft orders this year.

Apart from Emirates Airlines and the two aircraft manufacturers, other companies making announcements at the show included, India's private carrier Kingfisher Airlines, International Lease Finance Corporation, Low Cost Aircraft Leasing, Sukhoi and Northrop Grumman. Kingfisher has placed orders worth $1.9 billion for 30 Airbus A 320.

“In addition, there have been literally scores of announcements of new facilities, services, joint ventures and the launch of a low cost carrier for Saudi Arabia – it has been an extremely focused business show,” said Alison Weller, Director Aerospace, Fairs & Exhibitions (F&E) that organises the Dubai air show.

A major highlight yesterday was the signing of a contract with Airbus for 12 new A350 aircraft by International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC), the world's largest commercial leasing company and a subsidiary of American International Group, Inc.

"The Airbus A350 is the natural choice for a global lessor like us," said ILFC Chairman and CEO Steven Udvar-Hazy. "The A350's innovative features combined with operational commonality with existing Airbus fleets, give it a winning performance with our customers, as well as making it an attractive asset to invest in for the future. It complements our portfolio of Airbus aircraft in which the A330 and its singe-aisle Family are the cornerstones." Another deal involved the purchase of three Bombardier aircraft by a Gulf-based group. Another contract that was announced yesterday came from Russia’s Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company, which took an international launch customer order worth approximately $1 billion at list prices for 20 firm RRJ95 aircraft and 20 options from Concord Aviation, a start-up leasing company in Dubai.

Northrop Grumman Corporation yesterday revealed it has been selected for a contract valued at more than $230 million to update Jordan’s national command, control, communications and intelligence networks with state-of-the-art systems. Other orders announced yesterday included that of Emirates airline which signed a new contract with Hong Kong Aero Engine Services Limited and Singapore Aero Engine Services Limited for the ongoing maintenance and repair of Rolls-Royce Trent aircraft engines within its fleet.

The new contract, potentially worth $600 million, will cover the maintenance of all Emirates’ Trent 500, Trent 700 and Trent 800 engines for the next three years.

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