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Ethiopian Airlines acquires a next-generation Airbus

The Airbus A350 XWB. (Image source: Ethiopian Airways/Societe Generale)

Ethiopian Airlines has signed a 12-year contract with Ping An Leasing for the lease of a new Airbus A350 XWB

The Ethiopian company, considered Africa’s leading carrier, took possession of its fourth A350 XWB (extra-wide body) from Airbus on 28 April. The aircraft was acquired and immediately leased to Ethiopian Airlines by one of the main new players on the international leasing market, Ping An Leasing, a subsidiary of China's foremost private insurance firm Ping An Insurance Group.

The Airbus A350 XWB is a new-generation aircraft made from lighter materials with more efficient engines that are quieter (to such an extent that the aircraft has been nicknamed the “hushliner”) and offer a reduction in fuel consumption of nearly 25 per cent in relation to the previous generation, with a sharp reduction in CO2 and nitrogen oxide emissions.   

This aircraft joins the Ethiopian Airlines fleet in the context of its 15-year strategic plan to become the leader in the modernisation and connectivity of African economies. It is also the first widebody aircraft to be added to the Ping An Leasing portfolio, reflecting the lessor's attachment to this latest-generation model.

The Airbus Foundation took advantage of the delivery flight between Toulouse and Addis Ababa in Ethiopia to join forces with the German NGO humedica e.V and Aviation Without Borders to fly nine tonnes of humanitarian goods to provide relief to drought prone areas in the East African region.