Aerolineas to request Ex-Im guarantees

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Aerolineas Argentinas will request US Export Import Bank guarantees at a meeting scheduled for 18 May in Washington DC, according to the export credit agency.

Last month, the airline announced the lease of 10 CFM 56-7 powered additional Next Generation Boeing 737-700 aircraft from ILFC, bringing the total number of Boeing 737 NG aircraft in its fleet to 22.

According to Aerolineas, deliveries of the aircraft featuring the airline's new livery and two-class seating arrangement, will begin as early as this month, with the last aircraft to be delivered in October 2012.

This lease agreement, which is part of the 2010-2014 business plan of the carrier, largely unifies its medium haul fleet and reduces its medium aircraft age from 15.6 years in 2009 to 10.9 years in 2012.

Since Argentina nationalised Aerolineas from now bankrupt Marsans/Air Comet about two years ago, the carrier has almost fully modernised its short haul fleet operated by domestic subsidiary Austral with Embraer E-190 jets and Aerolineas' medium haul fleet with 737NG aircraft.