Oman Air to double fleet


Oman Air plans to double its fleet to about 25 single-aisle and wide-body jets by 2011, the Oman Daily Observer reported.

CEO Ziad Karim Al Haremi said the carrier would be looking at major purchases of new-generation Airbus 350 and Boeing 787 aircraft. Oman Air currently has 12 narrow-body, single-aisle planes.
The company is in the midst of a rebranding plan.
Al Haremi said earlier that the company’s management is actively preparing a five-year plan while an international consultancy firm will be engaged to prepare a 20-year plan.
Meanwhile, the board of Oman Aviation Services (OAS), which operates Oman Air, has approved an immediate plan to acquire a Boeing 737-800 and an A330-200 from Airbus, a company statement said.
The two aircraft are in addition to an earlier board approval for five A330-200s from Airbus and three Boeing 737-800s.
Oman Air is preparing for an overhaul after Oman’s government offer to buy out majority of shares of Oman Aviation Services to turn the airline operator into a state-owned firm.
The government raised its stake in the airline to 82 per cent from 34 per cent by injecting an additional $147 million.
He said the company will invite Boeing and Airbus, in which EADS is a shareholder, to discuss buying Boeing 787 and A350 from Airbus.
The airline said last month it was planning to operate long-haul routes. It will start operations to London and Bangkok from Muscat by November this year, the statement said.
Oman Air, which also flies to destinations in the Middle East and the Indian sub-continent, has six Boeing 737s and four ATR 42-500s.