Airbus aircraft will once again play an important role for a new airline’s launch in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, with Libyan Wings’ selection of the next-generation A350 XWB and A320 to build up its operations – which are to begin next year with the lease of two A320s.
During a press conference at the Dubai Airshow today, this nascent carrier announced a Memorandum of Understanding for future deliveries of three A350-900 versions from the A350 XWB family, along with four A320neo (new engine option) aircraft. Two leased A320ceo (current engine option) jetliners will be used in its service start-up at the beginning of 2014.
Libyan Wings is a fully privately-funded airline backed by Libyan businessmen, according to Chairman Wisam Al Masri. It will function as a full-service operator, with the aircraft configured in both business and economy class seating.
Established in 2012, the Tripoli-based carrier plans to serve primarily the MENA region at the start, explained Haret Alfasi, the carrier’s Applications Manager. The current strategy is to debut with domestic routes and flights to such countries as Tunisia, Egypt and Morocco, along with Turkey. Future expansion is anticipated to northern Europe, with service to Persian Gulf countries also envisioned, he explained
“This contract signing with Airbus today serves to demonstrate in true terms our dedication to establishing a world-class airline, which we are confident will set a new benchmark for quality of service and customer satisfaction,” Alfasi told reporters at the Dubai Airshow announcement press conference. “Our aircraft choice today also demonstrates a commitment to innovation, technology and matching customer expectations in terms of comfort and safety, while also addressing the growing environmental concerns of the aviation market.”
He added that Libya’s air transport sector is developing rapidly, maintaining a strong recovery trend that has been boosted by a consumer market boom and the introduction of world brands in the country.
“Libyan Wings is here to demonstrate that we intend to make an impact in this market as well,” Alfasi concluded. “In addition, Libyan Wings is keen to play role in helping to revolutionize and improve airport infrastructure in Libya.”