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EVA to boost Boeing 777-300ER fleet to 28 planes

SEATTLE--EVA Air (長榮航空), Taiwan's second-biggest international carrier, said Wednesday that it will continue its program of Boeing 777-300ER purchases to make the model the backbone of its fleet.

EVA Air Chairman Chang Kuo-wei (張國緯), who is currently returning to Taipei after taking delivery of two of the planes in Seattle, said the two new acquisitions mean that the company now owns 17 of the 777-300ERs.

According to Chang, Boeing will deliver another later this year, and four next year.

Chang said that as the Boeing 777-300ER is a stable and reliable model, his company will purchase a further six, boosting the 777-300ER fleet strength to 28.

The additional six aircraft are expected to be delivered in 2016 and 2017, he said.

Currently, EVA Air runs a fleet of 64 planes, providing services to 63 destinations worldwide.

The two newest planes, which are scheduled to arrive in Taiwan at 7:30 p.m. Thursday local time, will serve the routes between Taipei and Los Angeles and between Taipei and New York, starting from June 3, EVA Air said.

As a result, the carrier's number of flights to Los Angeles will increase to 20 from 17 a week, while the number of flights to New York will rise to seven from five.

The two new Boeings will offer Panasonic Avionics' Global Communications Suite (GCS), the first Boeing 777-300ER authorized to use the entertainment package.

Meanwhile, Chang said EVA Air is planning to buy no less than five Boeing 787-10 aircraft, which the U.S. aircraft manufacturer is scheduled to produce on a commercial launch basis in 2019, to replace the existing Airbus 330-200s aircraft currently in the EVA Air fleet.

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Two 777-300ER airplanes dock at Boeing's headquarters in Seattle on Wednesday, May 21; the two airplanes were acquired by EVA Air. The planes will begin flights to the United States in June. EVA Air has placed purchase orders for a total of six 777-300ERs. The airline said it plans to lease six additional planes of the same model.

(CNA)

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