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Qatar Airways Signs Deal for 50 Airbus A321neo ACF

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Qatar Airways Signs Deal for 50 Airbus A321neo ACF

Qatar Airways Signs Deal for 50 Airbus A321neo ACF
December 07
09:39 2017

MIAMI – The state visit of French President, Emmanuel Macron, on Qatari land, was the perfect scenario to score a new deal for 50 Airbus A321ACF (Airbus Cabin Flex configuration), to be acquired by the country’s flag carrier, Qatar Airways.

The Gulf carrier will make an investment of $6.4 billion with an option to buy 36 more. This updated order replaces the original one placed in 2011.

According to Qatar Airways Group CEO, Akbar Al Baker, the order was placed “to answer our need for growth and additional capacity.”

Al Baker said that the A321neoACF “is a world-class choice for our passengers and for our business.”

This order comes in following last May’s major disagreement between Airbus and Qatar Airways concerning the delivery of the A320neo.

During a press conference, at the time, Al Baker directly blamed Airbus for slowing Qatar’s growth because of the engine troubles that delayed the aircraft’s delivery.

“We have five more routes that we would like to announce, but we can’t, because of delivery delays from Airbus,” he stated.

Airways asked Al Baker about the issue during his announcement in May, and he replied, “They’re not there yet. We walked away from its first A320neo delivery, two days ago,” because of continued issues with its engines from Pratt & Whitney.

READ MORE: Qatar Airways’ Al Baker Slams Airbus, Walks Away from First A320neo

Today, however, both France and Qatar signed various contracts to cover different interests of both nations.

This state visit comes after Qatar was hit by numerous sanctions imposed by neighboring countries.

The French President’s initial goal was to reach a diplomatic release to the tense geopolitical situation. However, the meeting finalized with an agreement that involved 50 Airbus aircraft.

READ MORE: ANALYSIS: Qatar Diplomatic Spat Could Reshape Global Aviation

“These contracts underline the closeness of our commercial ties,” said Macron as he remarked the contracts were valued at $14.1 billion.

Among the deals reached: France’s Dassault Aviation sold 12 French-built Rafale fighter jets, and Airbus sold 50 A321 with options for 36 more.

Also, the French National Railway Company, along with Paris Metro Company, RATP, won a contract to run the Doha metro, and French state-owned armaments company, Nexter, sold 490 armored vehicles as well.

READ MORE: How Is Qatar Coping With the Blockade?

“We are pleased that a signature airline like Qatar Airways has chosen the A321neo ACF,” said Fabrice Brégier, Airbus Chief Operating Officer, and President Commercial Aircraft.

“This is an endorsement for the largest member of our single-aisle family. It confirms the aircraft’s strong position as the ideal Middle of the Market airplane for the Middle East.”

Qatar Airways has 39 A320s in its fleet and eight A321-200s. The A321 is the largest member of the A320 Family, seating up to 240 passengers.

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About Author

María Corina Roldan

María Corina Roldan

Online Executive Editor. Journalist and Certified Radio Host. Studying for a Specialization in Public Opinion and Political Communications. Even though I love politics I’ve found myself fascinated by the Aviation World. I’m also passionate by economy, strategic communications, my family, my country, and dogs. mc@airwaysmag.com

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