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Wed 4 Nov 2009 07:14 AM

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Saudia eyes 58 planes in fleet revamp

Saudi Arabia's national carrier signs $2.6bn Airbus deal as part of modernisation plan.

Saudi Arabian Airlines (Saudia) has signed a SR10 billion ($2.6bn) contract with Airbus to purchase 58 aircraft, including A320s, A321s and A330s.

The move is part of the company’s efforts to modernise its fleet and meet global challenges, Khaled Al-Molhem, director general of the carrier, said.

“We intend to modernise our fleet by purchasing the most advanced planes available in the world,” he said in comments published by Arab News on Wednesday.

He added: “Saudi Airlines has been making concerted efforts to maintain its leading position among the world’s major airline companies."

Al-Molhem was recently in the French city of Toulouse, along with other Saudia executives, to receive two A320 planes, which it bought from Airbus, the paper added.

The A320 will be deployed on routes in the region, to Europe and to the Indian subcontinent, from Saudia's hubs in Riyadh and Jeddah, the company said.

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