Cathay takes three 747-8Fs but cancels 777Fs

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Cathay Pacific Airways is to acquire three Boeing 747-8 freighters but is cancelling a deal for eight 777 freighters.

Under the agreement the airframer will also take back four converted Boeing 747-400 freighters from the Hong Kong-based carrier.

Cathay values the deal for the 747-8Fs at around $1 billion and says, in a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange, that the jets will be delivered this year.

But it is cancelling the eight 777Fs which it agreed to purchase in August 2011, and which were due to arrive in 2014-16.

Pre-delivery payments for the 777Fs will be credited to the purchase of the 747-8Fs.

Cathay says the deal is linked to a new agreement with Air China under which the Chinese operator's cargo division will pick up eight 777Fs. Cathay holds stakes in both Air China and Air China Cargo.

Under the restructured purchase, Cathay is also taking options to acquire five 777Fs.