Kuwait Airways Increases Airbus Orders To 31 Jets

Kuwait Airways on Monday (21/2), announced the expansion of its $6 billion deal with Airbus to 31 aircraft, revamping a deal reached in 2014.

The deal came after what the airline called often “hot” negotiations following an investigation into bribery allegations surrounding the original order.

“We have successfully agreed on a monumental restructuring that will position Kuwait Airways much more strongly for success over the next 15 years,” the airline’s chairman, Ali Al-Dukhan, told a news conference.

The new agreement, which adds three new aircraft to the previous 28 orders, including nine Airbus A320neo, six A321neo, three A321neoLR, four A330-800neo, seven A330-900neo and two A350-900.

Al-Dukhan said the re-deal was aimed at giving the airline greater flexibility after the travel industry was rocked by the coronavirus pandemic.

“Although corrections were made in 2018, the deal requires further corrections to suit the future of Kuwait Airways, particularly with transitional needs and for greater flexibility in the post-Covid aviation industry,” he said.

Dukhan told AFP news agency Kuwait Airways had so far received eight planes and expects two more by the end of this year, most of the planes on order to arrive by 2026.

“This agreement will give us greater flexibility to expand to more flight destinations,” he said, adding that the airline wanted to expand from 57 destinations to 100 direct destinations in the next two years. [my/jm]