Monday, June 4, 2012

► ETHIOPIA: Airbus pitches A330 to Ethiopian.

European aircraft manufacturers, Airbus Industrie, were recently in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, showcasing their A330 in an attempt to woo potential orders from carrier, Ethiopian Airlines (ET). This follows on from a technical presentation made last year in November.

In 1998, Ethiopian placed an order for two A340s to use on its Addis Ababa - Washington DC route, both of which were never delivered, instead being replaced by the airline's present Boeing 767-300s.
Ethiopian airbus
The Ethiopian A340 that never was. (Eric Pajaud)
"Crawford Hamilton, director of the A330 programme, told The Reporter that executives of Ethiopian were evaluating the A330 aircraft.

Hamilton said last November an Airbus technical team made a technical presentation to senior officials of Ethiopian in Addis Ababa. “The A330 is a very good long-range aircraft,” says Hamilton. “Ethiopian Airlines is one of the leading airlines in Africa. It is a reliable customer. It is self-sufficient. So we are trying to sell a very good aircraft to a very good airline.”"

Though a very loyal Boeing operator (of its 48 aircraft at present, 40 of them are Boeing), Ethiopian Airlines did place an order worth some USD$3billion for 12 Airbus A350-900 XWBs at the 2009 Dubai Airshow, for use on its "Far East and the American operations" and with further strong growth forecast in the next 20 years, the airline could be doing a lot more business with Airbus in the near future.