Qatar Airways has ordered an additional four Boeing 777 Freighters to add to the four it confirmed and four options announced in January 2015.
The airline announced the 777F order at the 51st Paris Air Show last week, where it also ordered Boeing 777-8X, in a total deal worth $4.8 billion. Qatar Airways has seven 777F in its fleet and has 50 777-9X on order. The airline’s freighter fleet also includes six Airbus A330 Freighters, with five more firm orders and eight options.
Qatar Airways’ chief executive officer (CEO), Akbar Al Baker, says: “The order for four 777 Freighters underpins the value that this airplane has also brought to our rapidly growing cargo operations. Qatar Airways Cargo is an integral part of the Qatar Airways Group and we look forward to enhancing the existing fleet with next generation aircraft.”
Boeing Commercial Airplanes president and CEO, Ray Conner, says: “We are very proud that Qatar Airways continues to expand its cargo operations with the 777 Freighter.”
Explaining the 777-8X order, Al Baker says: “Acquiring technologically advanced airplanes such as the 777X is integral to our expansion strategy. With the addition of these 777-8Xs to the 50 777-9X already on order, we are confident of continuing the tremendous legacy of the 777.”
At the Farnborough Air Show in July 2014, Qatar Airways announced it would order in for four 777Fs, with the option for four more, which it finalised in January 2015. The total deal was worth $2.5 billion. After a slow year for freighter sales in 2014, where Boeing confirmed a Boeing 747-8 Freighter order from Cargolux International Airlines in February, 2015 has been a considerable improvement.
In February, Korean Air ordered five 777Fs with the option for six more and two 747-8Fs. In January, Silk Way West Airlines ordered three 747-8Fs, which was the first sale for the model for over a year.
Qatar Airways has added freighter routes to its network in 2015, starting with twice-weekly flights to Basel (Switzerland) using an Airbus A330 Freighter on 28 January. The Wednesday and Saturday service was part of its pharma express to link Brussels and Basel to Doha.
On 4 April, the airline launched twice weekly 777F services to Los Angeles (US) via Luxembourg and Mexico on Wednesdays and Saturdays.