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Malaysia Airlines Orders 17 Airbus A330s

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Malaysia Airlines has placed a firm order with Airbus for 17 A330 widebody aircraft. The contract firms up a previously announced Memorandum of Understanding for 15 A330-300 passenger aircraft, plus an additional order for two A330-200F Freighters for operation by the carrier's subsidiary MASkargo. Deliveries of the passenger aircraft will begin in the first half of 2011, with the first freighter joining the MASkargo fleet later the same year.

Seating 283 passengers in a high comfort two class layout, the A330-300 will become the mainstay of the carrier's medium haul passenger fleet and will be used on services to destinations across the Asia Pacific region, as well as to the Middle East. In the freight market, MASkargo will fly the aircraft on sectors of up to 3,200 nautical miles, with the capability to carry payloads of almost 70 tonnes.

"The A330s complement the other aircraft orders under our fleet modernisation plan. The ability to add capacity will enable us to offer more frequencies to key destinations and fly to new destinations. This strategy complements our continuous investment in people, systems as well as infrastructure, and positions us in high gear for growth," said Malaysia Airlines Managing Director/CEO, Azmil Zahruddin.

Malaysia Airlines is a long-standing customer of Airbus and currently operates 14 A330s, comprising 11 A330-300s and three long range A330-200s. In addition to the latest A330 order, the carrier also has six A380s on firm order for future operation on its busiest long haul routes.

The twin engine A330 is one of the most widely used widebody aircraft in service today. To date, Airbus has won more than 1,000 orders for the various versions of the aircraft. More than 650 A330s have already been delivered and the aircraft is currently flying with over 80 operators worldwide.

A330-200F

The A330-200F is the latest addition to the A330 Family and will enter service later this year. The A330-200F can carry more than 69 tonnes of cargo on non-stop flights of 3,200 nautical miles. The aircraft features a versatile main-deck cargo loading system, which can accommodate both pallets and containers, enabling operators to serve the freight lift needs of varying markets. The below video was taken at the Singapore Airshow earlier this year.

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