Hanoi (VNA) – New age carrier Vietjet has clinched a contract with aircraft manufacturer Airbus, purchasing 20 brand new A321XLR aircraft with a hope that they will support its international expansion when Vietnam’s aviation market is heating up.

The deal in Toulouse (France) on October 31 will make Vietjet one of the first carriers in the world to operate Airbus’s newest "extra-long-range" version when the first of the aircraft are delivered in 2023. With a range of up to 8,700km, the innovative model will serve Vietjet’s fleet modernisation and international flight network expansion plans in the near future.

On this occasion, the two parties also signed an agreement for two additional A320/A321 aircraft Simulators (SIM) for pilot and technician training, increasing the manufacturer’s SIMs at the Vietjet Aviation Academy to three, helping increase the capacity for training at the Vietjet facility.

Vietjet President & CEO Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao and Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury co-signed the important contract during the official visit of Thao and Vietjet’s top leaders to Europe.

Speaking at the contract signing ceremony, Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury, said: “Vietjet is one of the fastest growing carriers in the Asian region and we feel proud to have the A321XLR joining its fleet. This order is another strong endorsement of our decision to bring true long range capability to the singe aisle market with the A321XLR, enabling airlines to extend their networks at the lowest possible cost. Furthermore, we are also pleased to develop further our collaboration with Vietjet in the area of training.”

Vietjet CEO Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao said: “Vietjet has always been a pioneer for operating new, modern, advanced and fuel-efficient aircraft. We are proud of operating the world’s youngest Airbus fleet with an average age of only 2.7 years, which has contributed greatly to Vietjet’s success over the past years. Following the signing of this contract today, the new A321XLR will be the perfect upgrade to comprehensively modernize Vietjet’s fleet as we look to strongly grow international flight network. It’s exciting to know that our passengers will soon enjoy flying on our comfortable, modern and cost-saving mid-haul flights.”

Low-cost Vietjet places order for 20 Airbus A321XLR aircraft hinh anh 1At the contract-signing ceremony between Vietjet and Airbus (Photo: VietnamPlus)

With this latest contract, Vietjet’s total order with Airbus reaches 186 aircraft with the first A321XLRs to be delivered to the airline from 2023.

The next step on from the A321LR, the A321XLR model responds to market needs for even more range and payload, creating more value for the airlines. From 2023, the aircraft will deliver an unprecedented Xtra Long Range of up to 4,700nm (8,704 km) – 15 percent more than the A321LR – and with 30 percent lower fuel burn per seat compared with previous-generation aircraft.

As part of the deals for the new aircraft and SIMs, Airbus Services provides also state-of-the-art training solutions to ensure safe, reliable and economically efficient operations on all Airbus aircraft throughout their lifecycle. The aircraft manufacturer is also on-hand to offer support every step of the way with a comprehensive and tailored training portfolio designed and developed by Airbus for Vietjet’s pilots, cadets, cabin crews, performance & operations engineers, maintenance personnel and structure & repair specialists.

Earlier, Vietjet Aviation Joint Stock Company (HOSE code VJC) was named among Vietnam’s 50 best listed companies in 2019 by Forbes Magazine on August 15.

Vietjet has been recognised for the third consecutive year since its official listing on HOSE in February 2017. VJC shares quickly attracted investors’ attention and the company was added to the VN30 basket for the 30 largest listed firms in its first year of trading.

Vietjet’s revenue from air transport saw a yearly increase of 22 percent to more than 20.14 trillion VND (865 million USD) in the first half of this year. The company also saw a year-on-year rise of 16 percent in its six month pre-tax profit to more than 1.56 trillion VND (67 million USD)./.