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French Version

Gulf Air to replace ageing Boeing 767s

Gulf Air plans to spend $900 million to replace nine ageing Boeing 767s, it announced last night. The company unveiled a three-year strategic plan, with Bahrain and Oman as equal partners, following a board meeting in Muscat.

Directors elected Bahraini businessman Abdel-Aziz Jassim Kanoo as the new chairman and decided to invest $900 million over the coming three years to replace nine ageing Boeing 767s with new types of aircraft.

The new strategy, titled Smart Airline, Successful Business, was approved at the first board meeting under Gulf Air's new ownership structure.

Bahrain and Oman both currently each own 50 percent of the airline.

Abu Dhabi's withdrawal as a shareholder will be completed next month.

The new strategy will reinforce Gulf Air's position as a world class service brand with the strongest regional network in the Middle East, president and chief executive James Hogan announced at a news conference in Muscat's Grand Hyatt Hotel.

"The new two-hub strategy will result in significant cost reductions and bring major improvements to our key operational indicators," he said.

"We will still retain more than 50 flights a week into and out of Abu Dhabi."

Gulf Air, which has 34 aircraft, will increase the fleet to 45 in 10 years, said Hogan.

"Currently we have four types of aircraft which will be reduced to two types," he added.

Amman,02 06 2006
The Daily Star
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