Indonesia’s Lion Air to Buy 230 New Boeing 737s in $21.7b Deal

By webadmin on 08:06 pm Nov 17, 2011
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Nusa Dua. Lion Air has agreed to buy 230 Boeing 737 aircraft
with a list price of $21.7 billion, the White House said on Thursday,
touting the sale as the US firm’s biggest-ever commercial order.

The
deal was announced soon after US President Barack Obama touched down in
Bali for the East Asia summit on the final leg of a regional tour
partly aimed at drumming up sales for US products at a time of slow
growth back home.

Officials said the Lion Air order was for 201 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft and 29 Next Generation 737 ER planes.

The White House issued a statement saying Obama would join a Boeing-Lion Air signing ceremony this morning.

Aviation
Week reported on Nov. 4 that Lion Air, Indonesia’s largest privately
held carrier, was seeking new, narrow bodied aircraft and was
considering 737s and the European-made Airbus A320.

The White
House also said that the deal included options for a further 150
aircraft valued at $14 billion, which could put the eventual deal at
$35 billion.

When asked for comment, Lion Air did not deny the
deal but refused to confirm until it met with Boeing in Denpasar this
morning. “I can’t confirm anything because our final decision will be
made [Friday] morning,” Lion Air spokesman Edward Sirait told the
Jakarta Globe on Thursday evening.

Lion Air currently has a
fleet of 65 planes, mainly of the 737 series, including 54 bought
directly from Boeing several years ago, Edward said.

The company’s fleet expansion plans are in line with its ambition to become the largest airline in Indonesia, he added.

“We
just want to make sure that it is an Indonesian company that dominates
the Indonesian aviation industry. We want to become the host in our own
home,” he said.

“Certainly, we also aim to expand our market to other countries. Our target is to fly routes in other Asian countries.”

AFP, JG