Malaysia Airlines said it will acquire 20 Airbus SE A330neo wide-body planes as it seeks more fuel-efficient jets amid a travel rebound.
The Southeast Asian carrier will purchase 10 A330-900 aircraft, with the rest coming from lessor Avolon Holdings Ltd existing order book, it said in a statement.
The model is a re-engined version of the original A330 that the airline already operates, obviating the need for pilots to go through expensive retraining.
Parent Malaysia Aviation Group has been cash-flow
positive since the fourth quarter of last year, with capacity restored to 60% of pre-Covid levels.
The stronger-than-expected recovery in air travel has provided a boost for planemakers following a hiatus during the pandemic, with wide-body demand now picking up after an earlier rebound in single-aisle sales.
Bloomberg News reported in July that Airbus was leading a race against Boeing Co for a wide-body jet replacement campaign at Malaysia Airlines. The carrier will operate the A330neo, which uses engines from Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc, on its network covering Asia, the Pacific and the Middle East.