Coverage by Chris Sloan
PARIS – Qatar Airways has signed a $1.8 billion commitment with Boeing for five more 777 Freighter aircraft.
The airline already operates 16 777 Freighters and is using this order to connect Qatari cargo with the world.
It is understood that the airline will be replacing its current freighters from 2025.
GCEO His Excellency Mr Akbar Al Baker labelled cargo as a vital lifeline to his country.
“I am very pleased that Qatar Airways has today signed this landmark order for five new Boeing 777 Freighters to add to our cargo fleet”.
“It will increase our 777 freighter fleet by a full 20 per cent, enabling us to further develop our business and offer new customers the chance to experience a truly first-class logistics service.”
“This is an order that will propel our growth and, I firmly believe, confirm us as the leading cargo operator in the world.”
Qatar Airways will use these new aircraft to expand on the already large cargo portfolio, offering more than 60 global destinations currently.
The carrier currently has around $73 billion worth of aircraft on order according to Al Baker.
Boeing Commercial CEO Kevin McAllister praised Qatar Airways for this order.
“Qatar Airways continues to implement a bold vision to be the world’s leading air cargo carrier and we are thrilled that they have again chosen to build that future with the Boeing 777 Freighter. It is a great testament to the aeroplane’s unmatched capabilities”.
“We are proud of our long-standing partnership with Qatar Airways. We deeply appreciate their business and positive impact on Boeing, our employees, suppliers and communities”, he added.
For the 777 Freighter itself, it has received 217 orders from customers globally since its launch in 2005, with 45 of those units being ordered last year.
Looking towards the Boeing 777X, Qatar Airways has stated interest in being the launch customer to the freighter variant, which could highlight the start of demand for that variant.
Boeing has dubbed itself the market leader in freighters, with 90% of the dedicated freighter capacity being provided by the manufacturer.
Where Mr Al Baker will choose to send these new 777 Freighters remains unclear.
But as the cargo world continues to grow at an exponential rate, Qatar Airways is leading the charge in getting there before the growth takes over too much.