Biman Bangladesh looks to lease three 777s in October

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Bangladesh's flag carrier is looking to lease three Boeing 777-200/200ERs starting this October so it can resume services to New York and other destinations.

A senior official in corporate planning at Biman, who wishes to remain anonymous, says it wants to lease three 777-200/200ERs starting in October and for the aircraft to be on wet-lease for the first six months, he says.

The carrier then wants to transfer it to a aircraft, maintenance and insurance (AMI) lease for another six months and then have a three year dry-lease, he says.

April last year Biman ordered four Boeing 777-300ERs and four Boeing 787-8s but first deliveries for the new 777s will be in 2013 and for the 787s it is 2019.

It also ordered two Boeing 737-800s but first deliveries will only be in 2015, says the official ATI spoke to today.

The carrier needs 777s in October because it plans to resume services to New York JFK and re-open some other routes, he says, adding that routes it closed in recent years are those to Paris, Frankfurt, Mumbai and Tokyo Narita.

In 2007 Biman had to scale back its international operations because some of its aircraft, such as McDonnell Douglas DC-10s, were grounded for maintenance.

It did have five DC-10s but the official today says it now only has four but all are operating.

If Biman succeeds in getting 777s on lease then the phase out of the DC-10s is a possibility, he says.

The airline is also negotiating to lease a third Airbus A310 and hopes to conclude a deal in the next two to three months, he adds.