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PAL spending up to $700 M for new planes

PAL president and chief operating officer Jaime Bautista told reporters the firm is spending from $500 million to $700 million for new aircraft and spare parts. Philstar.com/File

MANILA, Philippines - Flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) is spending up to $700 million next year for seven new aircraft as well as spare parts.

PAL president and chief operating officer Jaime Bautista told reporters the firm is spending from $500 million to $700 million for new aircraft and spare parts.

Bautista said some of the planes would be leased, while the others would be purchased. “The financing of the airplanes will not be a problem. There are many companies who will be willing to finance us,” he said, noting the carrier’s profitability.

For this year, the carrier has already taken delivery of five new A321 aircraft.

The company is also evaluating a plan to purchase new aircraft to replace its Airbus A340s as the planes consume more fuel and are costlier to maintain.

Bautista said PAL would want to make a decision on whether to get the A350 or Boeing 787 to replace the A340s by year-end.

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The carrier is acquiring new aircraft to be able to expand its services.

PAL’s passenger revenues reached P81.75 billion in 2014 as it carried over nine million passengers.

The carrier is a first half, its passenger volume reached six million.

The company’s parent firm PAL Holdings Inc. posted earnings of P129.74 million in 2014. Its net income reached P5.86 billion as of the first semester.

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