Chinese Lessor Orders ARJ-21s In USD$2.3 Bln Deal

July 11, 2016

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China Aircraft Leasing has ordered 30 Comac ARJ-21 regional jets and signed options for 30 more in a deal potentially worth USD$2.3 billion, the company said in a statement.

The planes will be used by an unnamed Indonesian airline in which CALC's parent, Hong Kong-based investment firm Friedmann Pacific Asset Management, plans to invest, it added.

The 78-90 seater jets would be delivered over the next five years, with Comac setting up maintenance and after-sales offices in Indonesia as part of the deal.

The leasing firm, which ordered 20 of Comac's larger C919s in 2012, said the latest deal reflected its confidence in China-made aircraft, and allowed it more flexibility to provide leasing options for airlines.

CALC has 70 Airbus and Boeing aircraft and says it has another 103 Airbus planes on order, allowing it to expand its fleet to 173 aircraft by 2022.

The deal is a boost for the ARJ-21, which is more than 10 years behind its original schedule and had its first commercial flight with Chengdu Airlines in end-June.

The ARJ-21 has just over 300 orders, mainly from Chinese carriers, but has not received certification from other regulators.

China is keen to establish itself as a global supplier of aircraft, and hopes that its in-development C919 will compete with the established 737 and A320. It is also working on a wide-body aircraft project with Russia.