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Gulf Air


Gulf Air orders 16 Boeing 787s for $4B

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Jan 13, 2008

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Bahrain-based airline Gulf Air has ordered 16 of Boeing Co.'s new 787 Dreamliners valued at around $4 billion dollars, with an option for eight more, an airline official said Sunday.

"The deal is worth $4 billion at list prices but would rise to $6 billion if we include the options," said Adnan Malek, a spokesman for Gulf Air.

The struggling carrier said in November at the Dubai air show that it was planning to renew its entire fleet and looking to order up to 35 planes.

"The total order could be more than 35," Malek said. "We are also in talks with Airbus for the A320 narrow-body planes."

Gulf Air plans to finance the aircraft purchases through a range of means.

"The aircraft will be partially financed by the government and partially through financial institutions," Malek said. "We are currently studying all the options."

Gulf Air, first launched as a pan-Arab Gulf carrier in 1950, is reeling from the successive withdrawals of Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Oman from its charter. Bahrain is the last remaining state shareholder.

At the height of its loss-making period, the airline was running at a loss of about $1 million a day. In November, the company said that it reduced its losses to about $600,000 a day.

Malek said the airline has since been able to further reduce these losses.

"They're now less than $600,000 a day, but we need to achieve profitability soon," he said.

Gulf Air said in April that it plans to cut long-haul routes and shed jobs as part of a two-year restructuring program.

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Gulf Air orders 16 Boeing 787s for $4B
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