By Shane McGinley
Istanbul-based carrier says it is aiming to double its fleet of 200 aircraft by 2022
Turkish Airlines is planning to order 100 new planes next year, the carrier’s CEO was quoted as saying.
Temel Kotil told the Bloomberg the carrier would sign a deal in 2013 for the single-aisle aircraft, but did not reveal whether the order would be with Airbus, Boeing or Bombardier.
Kotil added the aircraft would be used to boost services from its hub in Istanbul and it may upgrade its services to Chicago and Hong Kong to double-daily.
Last month, Kotil told Arabian Business the carrier is likely to double its fleet over the next ten years as it seeks to expand its number of flights twofold.
"We cannot stop our growth because we have coverage geographically but not enough frequencies. There is one way to go, to grow, increase frequency to the geography we are serving," Kotil, a US-trained mechanical engineer, said in an interview.
Turkish Airlines is the third largest airline in Europe by passenger traffic and currently operates 1,000 flights a day.
The airline, which flies to about 203 destinations and has a fleet of 200 aircraft, mostly made up of narrow body jets, is likely to make new plane orders within the next 18 months, Kotil said, adding that the carrier would be considering wide body, long haul aircraft like Boeing's 787 Dreamliner and Airbus's competing A350 in its future plans.
The carrier's board has yet to make a decision on the purchase of six Airbus A380s or Boeing's competing 747-8 jumbo planes, he said.
"In ten years time we will link everywhere to Istanbul," Kotil, who has been chief executive since 2005, added.
Earlier this month it was revealed Turkish Airlines is in talks with banks about a leasing arrangement worth around US$500m to help fund its plane orders, bankers familiar with the negotiations told Reuters.
The airline is considering using Enhanced Equipment Trust Certificates (EETCs) for the first time - financial securities issued by banks under which the airline gets ownership of the planes when the certificates mature, the bankers said.
Turkish Airlines was also considering issuing sukuk - Islamic bonds - or eurobonds next year to finance its aircraft acquisition plans from 2014, Reuters reported.
good so that Lufthansa Technik and Air France-KLM Industries, will fight for business contracts. Also same goes with Pratt and Whitney, Rolls Royce, Snecma and General Electric. More jobs for the aviation industry and also for the maintenance and manufacturing. I agree EU and America needs to boost their economies, too.