IndiGo con­firms record or­der of 250 Air­bus A320­neos

The China Post - - BUSINESS INDEX & -

In­dian air­line IndiGo has con­firmed an or­der for 250 A320 new planes, Air­bus an­nounced Mon­day, the avi­a­tion gi­ant’s largest ever con­tract by num­ber.

The or­der is worth some US$26.5 bil­lion at cat­a­logue prices, and brings to 530 the num­ber of A320 and A320neo medium-haul planes owned by the low-cost op­er­a­tor.

The pur­chase of the sin­gle-aisle A320neo planes con­firms a draft deal signed in Oc­to­ber.

“This new or­der fur­ther reaf­firms IndiGo’s com­mit­ment to the long-term de­vel­op­ment of af­ford­able air trans­porta­tion in In­dia and over­seas,” IndiGo Pres­i­dent Aditya Ghosh said in a state­ment.

For decades, In­di­ans de­pended on the na­tion’s bone-jolt­ing rail­ways to travel but cheap air fares have en­cour­aged tens of mil­lions of in­creas­ingly af­flu­ent In­di­ans to fly.

In­ter­na­tional tourism in the re­gion is also boom­ing.

IndiGo, In­dia’s largest pas­sen­ger car­rier, is the sole air­line op­er­at­ing in the coun­try to re­port prof­its con­sis­tently thanks to zeal­ous cost con­trols — even with In­dia’s high fuel taxes, ram­shackle air­port in­fra­struc­ture and vi­cious fare fights.

It marks Indigo’s bet that air travel is only just tak­ing off in the coun­try of 1.25-bil­lion peo­ple, an­a­lysts say.

The or­der is also part of Indigo’s drive to keep its fleet young — it re­tires its air­craft af­ter six years — to min­i­mize main­te­nance and fuel costs.

Smaller pas­sen­ger planes are in­creas­ingly in de­mand around Asia as bud­get car­ri­ers ex­pand their reach to smaller cities.

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