Turkish Air Seeks $3 Billion Loan to Finance Plane Purchases

Turkish Airlines is in talks with international lenders to borrow about $3 billion to finance aircraft purchases, a person with knowledge of the matter said.

The size of the loan, expected to run for 10 years to 14 years, could vary depending on the terms, said the person, asking not to be identified because the matter is confidential. The company may get the loan with tranches from commercial banks and export credit agencies, the person said.

The carrier is competing with Gulf airlines such as Emirates, Qatar Airways Ltd. and Etihad Airways PJSC as it establishes Istanbul as an international transfer hub. Turkish Airlines is scheduled to add 43 aircraft from Boeing Co. and Airbus Group SE in 2016 to its fleet, which had 282 planes at the end of June, the person said.

The borrowing is part of an annual plan. The airline receives a certain number of planes every year after signing contracts in 2013 for 95 narrow-body aircraft from Boeing and 117 others from Airbus until they are delivered by the end of 2021, when it will have almost 440 airliners in its fleet.

A Turkish Airlines spokesman declined to comment.

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