72 Boeing Dreamliners comprise Riyadh Air's first fleet order
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Riyadh Air starts to build fleet, orders Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners

Riyadh Air starts to build fleet, orders Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners

The first deliveries of the widebody aircraft are scheduled for early 2025

Neesha Salian
Boeing and Riyadh Air sign order agreement

Riyadh Air, the new airline launched by the Public Investment Fund (PIF), has placed an order of up to 72 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft in a multi-billion dollar deal, it announced today.

The order – 39 confirmed aircraft with an option to acquire 33 additional wide-body 787-9 Dreamliners – is aimed at establishing the kingdom as a global aviation hub.

In total, the kingdom’s two national carriers announced their intent to purchase up to 121 787 Dreamliners in what will be the fifth largest commercial order by value in Boeing’s history.

Impact of the Boeing-Riyadh Air agreement

This  deal will support the kingdom’s goal of serving 330 million passengers and attracting 100 million visits by 2030.

In terms of economic impact, in the US, the deal is expected to support nearly 100,000 direct and indirect jobs and more than 300 suppliers from across 38 states, including 145 US small businesses, while in Saudi Arabia, the new airline is expected to add $20bn to non-oil GDP growth and create more than 200,000 direct and indirect jobs.

The order also underlines the importance of Riyadh Air environmental goals as it aims to operate one of the newest and most sustainable airline fleets in the world, while intending to meet noise regulations.

Operating from the Saudi capital, Riyadh Air aims to connect millions of leisure and business travellers to more than 100 destinations around the world by 2030 following this partnership with Boeing.

Yasir Al-Rumayyan governor of the PIF and chairman of Riyadh Air said: “This is a momentous day for PIF and Riyadh Air, and highlights our determination to significantly extend Saudi Arabia’s connectivity with the world.

“Our stated commitment is to create a world-class airline and this partnership with Boeing in building the fleet is the next step in achieving the aspirations of Saudi Arabia as a global transportation hub.

“We look forward to fostering strong strategic relationships within the wider aviation ecosystem as we continue to shape the new airline to become one of the leading carriers around the world.”

Stan Deal, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, said: “This is a significant order that will support Riyadh Air’s commitment to deliver a world-class travel experience, while supporting American aerospace manufacturing jobs at Boeing and across our supply chain.”

Tony Douglas, CEO of Riyadh Air, said: “The new airline reflects the ambitious vision of Saudi Arabia to be at the core of shaping the future of global air travel and be a true disrupter in terms of guest experience.

“By positioning the airline as both a global connector and a vehicle to drive tourist and business travel to Saudi Arabia, our new 787-9 airplanes will serve as a foundation for our worldwide operations, as we build the wider network and connect our guests to Saudi Arabia and many destinations around the world.”

Riyadh Air highlights

Riyadh Air launches in KSA PIF Media centre

The carrier will equip its airplanes with advanced features with innovative, best-in-class cabin interiors and experiences, including next generation digital in-flight entertainment systems and connectivity solutions.

The first deliveries of the widebody aircraft are scheduled for early 2025.

Riyadh Air aims to be a digitally led full-service airline with a commitment to sustainability reflecting Saudi Arabia’s transformative projects under Vision 2030.

The 787-9 Boeing Dreamliner model is manufactured with environmental impact considerations in mind, including CO2 emissions, fuel efficiency and noise regulations.

The new airline was officially launched earlier this week and will serve as a lever to help fulfill Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 objectives.

Read: Saudi Arabia unveils Riyadh Air, the country’s new national carrier

The establishment of Riyadh Air is in line with PIF’s mandate to unlock the capabilities of key sectors locally to drive the diversification of Saudi Arabia’s economy.

The airline will also support the Saudi Aviation Strategy’s broader vision, and enable the National Tourism Strategy, unlocking Saudi Arabia’s cultural and natural attractions to international tourists and creating new jobs.

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