HYDERABAD : India’s newest airline will buy 150 Boeing 737 Max aircraft, in the first major announced sale for the manufacturer since a panel blew out of another Max model in midflight earlier this month, the airline announced Thursday.
Akasa Air CEO Vinay Dube announced the order of the Boeing 737 Max 10 and 737 Max 8-200 planes at an airshow in the southern Indian city of Hyderabad.
The airplanes will increase the airline’s total Boeing orders to 226, Dube said. It currently operates a fleet of 22 Boeing 737 Max 8 and Max 8-200 planes.
None of the planes is the same model as the Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 Max 9 on which a door plug blew out shortly after taking off on Jan. 5 from Portland, Oregon, leaving a hole in the fuselage. The cabin lost pressure and the plane was forced to descend rapidly and make an emergency landing. No serious injuries were reported.
Since launching operations in 2022, Akasa Air has captured about 4 percent of India’s domestic market, serving 18 destinations. It is looking to expand its network in India and South Asia.
“This milestone demonstrates the strength of our partnership with Akasa Air,” Boeing Chief Operating Officer Stephanie Pope said in a statement.
Boeing’s 2023 Commercial Market outlook forecasts the delivery of 2,705 new commercial airplanes over the next 20 years for the South Asian region, of which nearly 90 percent will be single-aisle jets.
Air India, IndiGo, SpiceJet, Vistara, Air India Express and Akasa Air are among India’s main airlines=Arab News