Airbus Wins $6.5 Billion Orders From Vietnamese Carriers

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  • State airline, affiliate to buy 10 A350s and 10 A320s
  • Private operator VietJet signs deal for 20 more A321 planes

Passengers board a VietJet Air aircraft in Hanoi. The airline has signed an order for 20 A321 planes.

Photographer: Brent Lewin/Bloomberg

Airbus Group SE won about $6.5 billion of orders from carriers in Vietnam, a nation that’s likely to rank among the top 10 fastest-growing aviation markets in the next two decades.

State-owned Vietnam Airlines Corp. signed a deal to buy 10 A350 wide-bodied aircraft worth about $3.1 billion in list prices, while affiliate Jetstar Pacific Airlines Aviation Joint Stock Co. agreed to purchase 10 A320s for about $980 million, Airbus said in a statement. VietJet Aviation Joint Stock Co., Vietnam’s only private airline, signed a $2.39 billion order for 20 more A321 planes, the low-cost carrier said in a statement separately.

The deals were signed Tuesday in Hanoi in the presence of French President Francois Hollande, who is currently visiting the Southeast Asian country where VietJet estimates air travel has expanded at least 20 percent in the past three years. Vietnam Airlines is revamping its fleet as it adds international routes while also fending off competition from VietJet, which started operations in December 2011.

The A321s VietJet signed to purchase will be delivered starting 2017 through 2020, according to the e-mailed statement from the carrier. Late last year at the Dubai Airshow, VietJet had agreed to buy 30 Airbus A321 planes in a deal worth $3.6 billion at list prices. As recently as May, the private operator said it would buy 100 Boeing 737-Max 200 jets in an order worth $11.3 billion when U.S. President Barack Obama visited Vietnam.

With more than 250 flights a day with 50 routes in Vietnam and across the region to countries such as Thailand, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, China, Myanmar and Malaysia, VietJet will probably surpass the national carrier as the nation’s biggest domestic carrier this year, according to CAPA Centre for Aviation.