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EgyptAir needs 34 more aircraft to meet demand

Ras Muhammad National Park woman at entrance Pexels/Meum Mare
The Ras Muhammad National Park in Southern Sinai is a growing ecotourism attraction. The number of flights in Egypt increased by 29 percent during the first six months of 2023
  • Lease agreement signed for 18 737s
  • Fleet of 125 needed to be profitable
  • Flights in Egypt up almost 30%

EgyptAir will need to increase its fleet size by more than a third to cope with demand, the airline’s group chairman and CEO, Yehia Zakaria, said at the Dubai Airshow on Monday.

Zakaria was speaking as the state-owned carrier announced a lease agreement with the US-based Air Lease Corporation covering 18 Boeing 737-8s.

Deliveries of the aircraft are scheduled from 2025.

EgyptAir, the country’s national carrier, has a mixed fleet of 91 Boeing and Airbus planes.

Data from Swiss company ch-aviation shows the carrier owns almost half the aircraft it operates, with the remainder leased.

Zakaria told a press conference at the Dubai Airshow: “To operate in a profitable way we have to have 125 aircraft. This is according to leading analysis of the demands of the market.”

The number of flights in Egypt increased by 29 percent during the first six months of this year, reaching 191,000, up from 148,000 flights in the same period in 2022, Egypt’s Ministry of Civil Aviation said.

In June EgyptAir saw a 12 percentage point increase in its aircraft occupancy rate, which rose to 77 percent.

The agreement came in what was a busy afternoon for the US plane maker Boeing. It also announced a $52 billion deal with the Dubai flag carrier Emirates and an $11 billion order from the low-cost carrier Flydubai.

At the same time, Royal Jordanian signed an order for six Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft. The airline’s CEO, Samer Majali, said the deal included two 787 jets that had previously been cancelled.

Meanwhile speculation grew on Monday that Turkish Airlines was going to make a “significant commercial aircraft order”.

An Airbus spokesperson told Reuters that an agreement had been reached and would be announced “in the coming days”.