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Tue 22 Mar 2016 03:55 PM

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Saudi national carrier seeks $1.3bn sukuk to expand fleet

Saudi Arabian Airlines says funds will be used to finance fleet expansion as it looks to operate 200 aircraft by 2020

Saudi national carrier seeks $1.3bn sukuk to expand fleet
Saudi Arabian Airlines (Saudia)

National carrier Saudi Arabian Airlines (Saudia) is seeking to raise 5 billion riyals ($1.3 billion) via the first tranche of a sukuk isuance programme in the second or third quarter of this year, its director-general Saleh al-Jasser said on Tuesday.

The funds will be used to finance fleet expansion, as the carrier aims to operate 200 aircraft by 2020, he told reporters at a business conference.

Details of the second tranche of the sukuk programme have not been determined, he added.

The airline has been spinning off units in the last several years; it is now preparing documentation to hive off its cargo unit in an initial public offer of shares, Jasser said without giving details.

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