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Historic deal: Ethiopian Airlines makes largest-ever Boeing jet purchase in African history

Business Insider Africa
Friday November 17, 2023

Ethiopian Airlines has ordered 11 Boeing 787 Dreamliners and 20 Boeing 737 MAX planes.

According to a statement issued by the airline on Tuesday, the agreement struck at the Dubai Airshow was the largest-ever purchase of Boeing jets in African history.

The transaction included an option for an additional 15 Boeing 787 Dreamliners and 21 737 MAX planes, according to Ethiopian Airlines. “We are pleased to announce Ethiopian Airlines’ deal with Boeing for 31 ultra-modern airplanes, with an option for 36 additional jets,” said Mesfin Tasew, the CEO of the Ethiopian Airlines Group.

“This order supports our growth plan and Vision 2035 Strategy, solidifying our longstanding partnership with Boeing,” the CEO added.

According to a statement, the airline is purchasing the 787-9 model, which is part of the Dreamliner series and reduces fuel consumption and emissions by 25%.

The inclusion of the 737-8 model, which cuts fuel consumption and emissions by 20%, improves environmental performance and passenger comfort.

“The commitment positions Ethiopian Airlines to strengthen and diversify its fleet, currently comprising over 80 Boeing jets. The new 737 MAX order will be posted on Boeing’s Orders and Deliveries website upon finalization,” as relayed via the statement.

Additionally, it announced that Ethiopian Airlines and Boeing would work together to provide cabin modification services for current 787 Dreamliners. These services would improve the in-flight entertainment system and provide new seats in all cabins, including lie-flat business-class seats from Boeing's joint venture Adient Aerospace, thereby improving the overall passenger experience.

“Ethiopian Airlines continues its leadership as one of Africa’s preeminent airlines with this landmark commitment to expand their 787 and 737 MAX fleets,” stated Brad McMullen, senior vice president of commercial sales and marketing at Boeing.


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