Cathay Pacific to order 32 A321neo aircraft in strong commitment for regional Asia growth

Premium Analysis

Cathay Pacific has reached a MoU with Airbus to order 32 A321neo aircraft for Cathay Dragon, enabling their next wave of growth. They are confident an expanded network will be sustainable once the airlines complete restructuring and lower their cost base.

The aircraft are needed to improve efficiency by replacing older aircraft: of Cathay Dragon's existing 23 Airbus narrowbodies, 15 are at least 12 years old.

The order provides for potentially substantial expansion. Growth is necessary as Cathay seeks new destinations to expand its network and unique city pair permutations. The A321 can reach the possible growth areas of Northeast China, Japan, Southeast Asia (especially Indonesia) and parts of India – all areas where secondary cities are fuelling growth. Some existing widebody flights could be downgauged to narrowbodies, preserving frequency – key to the Cathay way – but improving yields.

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