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Air Vanuatu order One ATR 72-500

Search ASIA Travel Tips .com Latest Travel News Thursday, 21 February 2008

Air Vanuatu has signed contract a contract with ATR for the purchase of the airline's first ATR 72-500. This contract signature follows the MoU signed in 2007.

This 70-seat aircraft will be equipped with 120-minutes ETOPS (Extended Range Twin-engine Operations) capability, the Elegance cabin, higher rated PW 127M engines, as well as state-of-the-art technological innovations in passenger comfort, communications and navigation aid tools. The aircraft will be delivered in 2009.

Since 2004, the airline has operated an ATR 42-300 for its principal domestic routes, linking the capital city Port Vila to the islands of Santo and Tanna, as well as regular flights to Nouma, New Caledonia. With its new ATR 72-500, Air Vanuatu will be able to face the increasing demand on its regional network. Furthermore, the unique ETOPS 120 capability offered with the ATR 72-500 will enable Air Vanuatu to develop its international network with flights to the surrounding Islands such as Fiji and the Solomon Islands.

Commenting on the contract, Hollingsworth Ngwele, Air Vanuatu CEO, said, Following the successful service of our ATR 42-300, the purchase of this ATR 72-500 will allow us to increase the capacity of our fleet and to face the growth of the demand. Because of its economics, performance, comfort and ETOPS 120 minutes, the -500 series ATRs are the optimal aircraft for the development of our domestic and international operations.

Stphane Mayer, ATR CEO, declared: The ETOPS 120-rated ATRs enable the airlines to expand their networks while reducing the length of the flights, the fuel burn and the CO2 emissions. We are honored with the renewal of the confidence of Air Vanuatu, while pleased to introduce the 500 series in a new country of the South Pacific, which represents a key market of the ATR success.

ATR reached in 2007 a record year with orders for 113 new aircraft. Since the beginning of the programme, ATR has sold 953 aircraft (417 ATR 42s and 536 ATR 72s) and has delivered 757 (397 ATR 42s and 360 ATR 72s), thus posting a current backlog of 196 aircraft.

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