China Airlines to expand fleet size from 66 to 100 planes

Tai­pei -To com­ply with offi­ci­al poli­cy to estab­lish an avia­ti­on hub on the island, Chi­na , the natio­nal , plans to expand fleet size from the cur­rent 66 to 100 pla­nes wit­hin 10 years.

C. C. Chang, chair­man of Chi­na Air­lines, says that the com­pa­ny is expe­ri­en­cing insuf­fi­ci­ent capa­ci­ty after the launch of direct flights bet­ween Tai­wan and Chi­na in July 2008, a pro­blem exaspe­ra­ted by gra­dual­ly rising demand for cross-strait flights, hence the chairman‘s com­ment about the need to expand fleet size.

Howe­ver Chi­na Air­line needs to rai­se capi­ta­li­za­ti­on to expand its fleet, says Chang. The airline‘s regis­te­red capi­tal is set at NT$52 bil­li­on (US$1.68 bil­li­on) and real paid-in capi­tal is NT$46.3 bil­li­on (US$1.49 bil­li­on), with the gap of NT$5.7 bil­li­on (US$183.87 mil­li­on) being the capi­tal incre­ment and ina­de­qua­te for future expan­si­on.

Chi­na Air­lines and sis­ter com­pa­ny--Man­da­rin Airlines—together will have a fleet of 80 lea­sed pla­nes by ear­ly next year. Chi­na Air­lines has alrea­dy orde­red 14 A350-900 mid-capa­ci­ty pas­sen­ger pla­nes for long-distan­ce flights, which are expec­ted to be deli­ve­r­ed by 2015.

Chang says that Chi­na Air­lines once plan­ned to rai­se capi­tal and import tech­no­lo­gies from Air­lines through stock swap con­si­de­ring the lat­ter is a high­ly repu­ta­ble car­ri­er. But Air­lines asked for a 25% sta­ke and manage­ment par­ti­ci­pa­ti­on in Chi­na Air­lines, a pro­po­sal the lat­ter refu­sed that blo­cked the deal.

Chi­na Air­lines is recep­ti­ve to beco­m­ing more glo­bal and hence may allow hig­her ownership of its sha­res by for­eign inves­tors, Chang says.

Source: CENS