Boeing and China Eastern Airlines have finalized an order of 15 787-9 Dreamliners. The order, valued at nearly $4 billion at current list prices, strengthens China Eastern’s expanding long-haul fleet.
“We are very happy to introduce the new 787 Dreamliners into our long-haul fleet,” said China Eastern Airlines Chairman Liu Shaoyong. “The addition of these next-generation, fuel-efficient airplanes will play a key role in supporting China Eastern’s strategy for international expansion, and enable us to realize profits in point-to-point routes across the Pacific Ocean, and between China and Europe.”
China Eastern plans to operate the new 787-9s on transpacific routes between China and North America, which continues to be a major market as the airline looks to bolster its trans-Pacific network.
With growing air traffic demand, the carrier plans to increase frequencies on existing routes from Shanghai to Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Vancouver and Toronto, as well as their newly launched destination, Chicago. The routes are currently operated by the airline’s flagship 777-300ER airplane.
“China Eastern has been a long-standing Boeing customer and we are honored that the passenger-preferred 787 Dreamliner will join their world-class fleet,” said Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president, Northeast Asia Sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
The 787 has proven to be an unmatched market opener, deployed across more than 50 brand-new nonstop global routes, as well as serving as an effective tool to increase frequency, often in conjunction with the 777. For China Eastern, operating both the 777 and 787 will allow the airline to continue growing its international presence with more capacity and cargo payload on key existing frequencies, while also providing the flexibility for further expansion in high-growth markets.