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African airlines swoop in for deals at Dubai Airshow

African airlines swoop in for deals at Dubai Airshow

African airlines lined up this week to upgrade and expand their fleets at the UAE’s Dubai Airshow.

Air Senegal signed a memorandum of understanding to purchase eight Airbus A220 aircraft to fly routes to Europe and West Africa from 2021, on the first day of the 5-day event that ended on Thursday.

The french planemakers declined to reveal the value of the deal, but Bloomberg reported the order could be valued at up to $730 million.

Under the MoU two aircraft will be delivered a year starting from 2021, West Africa’s Air Senegal said.

The Ghanaian government also signed a provisional order with Boeing for three 787-9 Dreamliners intended to serve a new 90% privately-owned airline in which the state will have a 10% stake, according to Ghana’s minister of aviation, Joseph Kofi Adda.

“We believe the advanced 787-9 Dreamliner gives us an efficient and flexible machine to launch a regional network and eventually serve international destinations in the future,” Kofi Adda said.

Ghana’s state airline Ghana Airways ceased operations in 2004, and was liquidated in 2005 after it failed keep up with its debt repayments following a government refusal to pay any more bailouts.

On the first day of the expo, Ethiopian Airlines signed a services deal with Boeing to equip a fleet of existing 787 Dreamliner jets with internet connectivity.

During the announcement the carrier’s CEO Tewolde Gebremariam said he was “undecided” over whether he would take any more deliveries of 737 MAX, according the Reuters. The 737 jet type has been grounded worldwide for eight months in the wake of fatal crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia.

Nigeria and West Africa’s largest airline, Air Peace also inked a $212.6 million deal for 3 E195-E2 jets from Embraer, the Brazilian planemaker announced on Monday.

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