China Southern, China Eastern and Air China announced orders for 292 Airbus A320 family aircraft almost simultaneously within hours.
China Eastern signed a $13 billion contract for 100 A320neo aircraft, and Air China buys 64 aircraft for itself and another 32 for a subsidiary of Shenzhen Airlines, totaling more than $19 billion.
According to Airbus, these major contracts demonstrate “a positive recovery momentum and great confidence in Airbus from the Chinese aviation business.” Boeing aircraft. Boeing 737 MAX continue to stand idle on Chinese territory, waiting for a positive decision from the authorities and the resumption of flights. After the disasters of Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines in March 2019, the Chinese regulator suspended production of Boeing's latest narrow-body aircraft.
For the same reason, China Southern Airlines canceled a contract for over 100 737 MAX aircraft for delivery in the coming years.
In May 2022, Airbus reported that about 130 customers had placed orders for more than 8,000 aircraft A320neo family. Six years have passed since their appearance. During this time, the manufacturer has handed over more than 2,200 aircraft to customers.
Asian countries continue to have a rather sluggish recovery from COVID-19. They lag behind the rest of the world primarily because of their principled stance on maintaining travel restrictions, especially in China. According to IATA data, China's domestic air traffic in April 2022 decreased by 80 percent compared to the same month in 2021.
At the same time, China Southern Airlines, China Eastern Airlines and Air China, the three largest carriers in China, report a slight growth in passenger traffic in May 2022.
The new aircraft will allow them to serve 13 percent more passengers, according to China Southern. China Eastern said it will use the A320neo both to increase capacity and to replace its aging fleet. Air China estimates that its capacity will increase by about 10 percent while reducing operating costs.
The new Airbus aircraft will arrive at Air China in the period 2023-2027, while the A320neo for China Southern and China Eastern will arrive no earlier than 2024-2027, and Shenzhen will receive its liners in 2024-2026.