Today's ATW Online reports that Cathay may not order new long-haul planes for some time.
Cathay Pacific 'not in a rush' to order new aircraft
Monday April 11, 2005
Cathay Pacific Airways may be further away from a new long-haul aircraft order than has been speculated previously.COO Tony Tyler told ATWOnline that the airline is evaluating both the 747ADV and A380 and the 777-300ER/A340-600, plus "other possible available options for long-haul aircraft," but that it "will not approach the market until we are ready&Our needs until the end of 2007 are already provided for, so we are not in a rush to make any decisions on future acquisitions."
Cathay currently operates 91 aircraft and has two 747-400s in storage, according to the Airclaims CASE database. It has eight aircraft on order, according to the same source.
Some observers have suggested that the touted greater equity involvement by Air China may affect the evaluation, but Tyler said Cathay evaluates its aircraft purchases according to its own business plans and operational needs, although "many factors play a part in this evaluation."
Boeing is hoping the carrier will be a launch customer for the 747ADV, with a number of airlines telling the manufacturer to firm up on the aircraft in the first half of this year. Tyler said, "The 747ADV looks [to be] a very interesting aircraft, which we have discussed at length with Boeing."
He also expressed interest in the A350 and 787, saying that "if their ownership and operating costs are good enough, [it may be] possible to operate [them] profitably on long thin routes which don't make sense with our current fleet. We will have a good look at the opportunities these aircraft may present, but since they are not going to be available for several years, and we don't want to be an early customer of any new type, evaluating them is not a priority at the moment."