Leading airline, Air Peace, yesterday placed a record order for 10 brand new Embraer 195-E2 planes, first of such in Africa.The order comprises purchase rights for another 20 E195-E2 jets. The request has 124-seater jet in dual class and 146-seater jet in single class configurations.
The deal, which was unveiled during Embraer Business Meeting with the aviation world in Port Louis, Mauritius, makes the Nigerian firm the first to order the brand of jets on the continent and also the official launch customer of the brand in this part of the globe.With all purchase rights exercised, the contract has a value of N640.5 billion ($2.12 billion) based on current price list.
The carrier also set a regional record in September 2018 when it requested 10 brand new aircraft from Boeing to increase its fleet to about 37. The new order further boosts its planes to 67.Shortly before the Boeing feat, Air Peace set a domestic feat as the first Nigerian airline to acquire and register the Boeing 777 aircraft in the country. Three of the four wide-body aircraft it acquired for its long-haul operations to Dubai, Sharjah, Johannesburg, London, Houston, Guangzhou and Mumbai have so far been delivered.
Speaking on the latest development, the airline’s Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Allen Onyema, stated that Embraer’s new E195-E2 presents “a marvel of economic performance.” He added: “It is also great that we will be the first E2 operator on the African continent. We already have the ERJ145s in our fleet, so we understand the high standards of Embraer products.”
The E195-E2 aircraft, the chief executive observed, would strengthen Air Peace’s drive to deploy the right kinds of planes to under-served and unserved domestic and regional routes under its no-city-left-behind project. `
Onyema thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for creating an enabling environment for the growth of the aviation sector through duty and Value Added Tax (VAT) waivers for commercial aircraft, engines and spares. Also, the Vice President, Sales Africa, Embraer Commercial Aviation, Raul Villaron, noted that the Nigerian carrier embodied the kind of pioneering spirit his company loves.