Oman Air, the national airline of the southern Gulf state, is to raise $80 million from local banks to finance a fleet modernization plan, the company told AFP on Monday, April 30.
Oman Air General Manager Abdulrahman Al-Busaidy said the winning bank or consortium from among 10 groups, including foreign banks, will be announced within two weeks.
As part of the plan, Oman Air will acquire five next-generation Boeing 737s, of which three aircraft will be on lease. The airline has signed a purchase agreement with Boeing for two 737s and a lease agreement with International Lease Finance Corp. for delivery from December 2001.
Oman Air is in advanced talks with Indian authorities for landing rights in Delhi and Cochin, Al Busaidy said. Currently, the airline operates direct flights to the Indian subcontinent and Gulf destinations.
Founded in 1993, Oman Air is 35 percent state-owned, with the remainder held by the Omani private sector. Its fleet includes two Airbus A320s, one Boeing 737, three Fokkers, two ATR 42s and a Twin Otter for domestic flights. — (AFP, Muscat)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)