The country’s national carrier Qatar Airways is eyeing a potential purchase of new cargo jets from Boeing.
Qatar Airways, has set its eyes on a potential imminent purchase of new cargo freighters, According to the airline’s CEO Akbar Al Baker, Qatar Airways is looking at an “attractive proposition from Boeing.”
“We are seriously looking at placing a large cargo order, a freighter order, because … as we are also growing our freight business, we need to be sustainable in that and we are going to imminently place a large freighter order,” said Al Baker.
However, Al Baker did not reveal what manufacturer Qatar Airways was planning on placing an order with, but that Boeing’s offer was an attractive one.
Qatar Airways operates 26 Boeing 777 freighters, 2 747-8 freighters and 6 Boeing 777-300ER mini-freighters.
As for the 777X freighter, the cargo plane is expected to carry about 110 tonnes of cargo. Boeing has yet to reveal when it plans to launch the freighter.
“We don’t only look at the price, we look at the performance, and I think the aircraft that Boeing is developing will outperform the current fleet that we have,” said the Qatar Airways’ CEO.
The passenger version of the world’s largest twin-engined jetliner, the 777X, arrived in Doha on Wednesday after staging a public debut at the Dubai Airshow.
On the airline’s official Instagram account, Qatar Airways posted a video of the Boeing 777x freighter, saying “Boeing’s latest generation #777X aircraft entered the skies over #Qatar for the first time today, as the world’s largest twin-engine jet landed at DIA ahead of its anticipated introduction to the #QatarAirways fleet in the near future.”
Al Baker said Qatar Airways expects to receive its first passenger version of the 777X in 2023.
The successor to best-selling 777 wide-body passenger plane was delayed for at least two and a half years “amid uncertainty over the timetable for certification,” according to Reuters.
During the initial stages of the COVID19 pandemic, Qatar Airways was able to soften the blow taken by the airline industry by redirecting resources to its cargo division, a move that business analysts commended.