Ethiopian Airlines, Africa’s largest and fastest-growing commercial airline is celebrating the delivery of the first of 30 737 MAX jets from Boeing.
With the MAX, Ethiopian will be able to achieve a double-digit improvement in fuel efficiency and provide passengers with a more comfortable experience, Boeing statement said.
“We are glad to include the Boeing 737 MAX 8, the latest in Boeing’s single-aisle series, in our young and modern fleet of over 100 aircraft with an average age of less than five years,” said Ethiopian Airlines Group CEO Tewolde GebreMariam.
“Ethiopian has been pioneering latest-technology aircraft into Africa throughout its 72-year history. In line with the airline’s growth targets under Vision 2025, we will keep on investing in further expansion of our fleet in acquiring the latest aircraft the industry has to offer,” GebreMariam.
In Ethiopian’s configuration, its 737 MAX 8 will seat 160 passengers.
“Ethiopian Airlines continues to fly at the forefront of Africa’s commercial aviation industry by operating the most advanced airplanes,” said Marty Bentrott, Boeing Sales vice president for Middle East, Turkey, Russia, Central Asia & Africa. “We are honored by Ethiopian’s continuing confidence in Boeing airplanes and we look forward to growing our five-decade long partnership.”
With this delivery, Ethiopian’s fleet of Boeing airplanes grows to 73 jets, including the 787 Dreamliner, 777, 737 MAX, and the 757 and 767.
100th Aircraft in Active Service, and other achievements
In May Ethiopian received its 100th aircraft, a Boeing 787-900, becoming the first for an African airline to operate 100 aircraft fleet in the history of the continent. The airline has maintained its remarkable reputation as an industry trendsetter and innovative market leader.
Ethiopian Airlines, which is the most profitable airline in Africa, has continued to expand as competing African airlines are battling operational challenges, and mired in heavy losses. The airline has pursued an aggressive expansion strategy, which has quickly transformed the carrier into the continent’s leading airline, unrivalled in efficiency and operational success.
The airline has five more Boeing 787-900 and 16 Airbus A350 airplanes on order, among others. Ethiopian was the first African Airline and second only to Japan to operate the B787 Dreamliner in 2012 and the first carrier in Africa to usher with the Airbus A350 XWB in 2016.The airline recently signed a purchase agreement with Bombardier Commercial Aircraft for 10 firm Q400 aircraft valued at $332 million. The order also includes purchase rights for five additional Q400 aircraft.
Ethiopian Airlines has made great strides towards offering world class aviation services and the airline’s efforts have been rewarded, recently named by TripAdvisor as “The Best Business Class in Africa and Indian Ocean”.