ANA ramps up 787 pilot training

Tokyo
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All Nippon Airways (ANA) intends have 100 pilots type-rated for the Boeing 787 by the end of December.

The carrier currently has 30 pilots rated on the 787 more are being trained to ramp up numbers in time for the delivery of new aircraft this year, said Captain Masami Tsukamoto, co-pilot of the inaugural passenger flight from Tokyo to Hong Kong.

ANA is likely to receive the delivery of its third 787 "within weeks", said Shinichiro Ito, the airline's president and CEO.

ANA plans to expand its 787 network to Europe and North America next year, said Ito, studying the possibility of starting services to Switzerland, Belgium and the west coast of the United States.

The airline will operate its first international service in December from Tokyo to Beijing, China. And its first long-haul flight from Tokyo-Haneda to Frankfurt, Germany on 21 January 2012.

The airline expects to receive five more 787s by the end of the calendar year, bringing its Dreamliner fleet to seven.

It also anticipates taking delivery of 11 787s by the end of its financial year which ends 31 March 2012, with 20 total aircraft scheduled for its 2012 fiscal year.

The airline has ordered a total of 55 787s, two of which have already been delivered. All 55 aircraft, including 15 787-9s, are due to be handed over by by Boeing by 31 March 2018.