Malaysia Airlines orders up to 36 ATR 72-600s
- The aircraft will be operated by the regional subsidiaries Firefly and MASwings
ATR and the flag carrier Malaysia Airlines today signed a purchase agreement for 20 firm ATR 72-600s, plus options for 16 additional aircraft. The deal is valued at over US$ 840 million, including options. The signature of this new contract follows a Memorandum of Understanding announced by the airline in December 2012. With today's signature, Malaysia Airlines brings to 42 the total of firm ATR 72s purchased since the initial purchase agreement in 2007. Malaysia Airlines currently has 22 ATR 72-500s, operated by booming business units Firefly (12) and MASwings (10). The introduction of these aircraft, which are the first ATR -600s to be selected for the growing Malaysian and regional market, will reinforce Firefly's and MASwings position on community markets and business routes and confirms Malaysia Airlines as a major operator of ATRs in Asia. Deliveries will start by mid 2013.
The arrival of these new ATR72-600s will enable Malaysia Airlines to further expand its regional offer, adding new routes and frequencies to its global network. The new ATR 72-600 delivers the latest innovations in terms of passenger comfort, with the award-winning Armonia cabin designed by Giugiaro and equipped with new slim line seats, larger overhead bins and appealing LED lighting.
Besides the 22 ATR 72-500s operated by Firefly and MASwings, Malaysia Airlines also has a fleet of over 100 medium and long-haul A330s, A380s, B737s, B747s and B777s.
Malaysia Airlines has just become a member of oneworld alliance, and operates flights to Asia, Australia/New Zealand, the Middle East, Europe and the US West coast.
Commenting on the deal, Ahmad Jauhari, Chief Executive Officer of Malaysia Airlines, declared: “We have been partnering with ATR for the last five years, and we are really satisfied with the outstanding performance and the commercial results that our ATR 72s provide to our growing community networks. The ATR aircraft are clearly playing an important role in the development of Malaysia Airlines, as they connect regional destinations and enable us to feed larger aircraft at our main hubs. The new aircraft will further improve the guest experience on our community airlines as they connect more and more people across Malaysia and the surrounding regions”.
Ignatius Ong, Chief Executive Officer of Firefly, declared: “Our exclusive ATR 72 fleet has allowed Firefly to develop a unique high frequency network out of Subang, Penang and Johor Baruh, which greatly benefits our Malaysian communities, as well as the rest of the population in the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT)”.
Captain Dato' Nawawi Awang, Chief Executive Officer of MASwings, said: “We are glad that MASwings' fleet of ATR 72s can efficiently serve the Sabah and Sarawak (East Malaysian states), and the BIMP-EAGA (Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area) communities and help to further enhance the tourism industry and the socio-economic development of the region”.
Filippo Bagnato, Chief Executive Officer of ATR, declared: “Malaysia Airlines is a really prestigious partner for ATR in Asia. We are honoured with the renewal of their confidence and we are pleased to further develop our relationship with the introduction of the many advantages of the ATR 72-600, our newest product. ATR aircraft are unrivalled in terms passenger comfort and environmental friendliness. We are delighted to be an active part of Malaysia Airlines' development of the regional connectivity in Eastern and Western Malaysia. We are also very pleased to welcome Malaysia Airlines as one of our first operators to use our recently open Training Center for ATR -600 series aircraft in Singapore”.
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Source : ATR Aircraft - an Alenia Aeronautical and EADS joint venture