James Hogan, chief executive officer of Gulf Air, told reporters the airline would seek a long-term loan to finance the purchase once approved by the airline owners, the governments of Bahrain and Oman.
Gulf Air, which returned to profitability in 2004 after years of losses, carries a debt of about $500 million.
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Photo © Faruk Öncan
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Photo © Florian Sindermann
"Our idea is to change the type of aircraft to two within ten years from four now," he said after a board meeting in Muscat, which will become the airline's other hub in March.
Hogan said the Manama-based Gulf Air, which operates a fleet of 34 aircraft, would start placing orders by May. He said the airline also plans to refurbish its fleet but did not give further details.
Abu Dhabi, which launched its own airline in 2004, has announced its intention to withdraw from Gulf Air. Abu Dhabi and other former co-owner Qatar have injected millions of dollars to keep the airline afloat in its red years.