Bolivia's government has announced a $17.5 million cash injection into state-owned Boliviana de Aviacion to support replacement of its Boeing 767-300 long-haul fleet with Airbus A330s.

BoA's chief commercial officer Hugo Estrada says the funds are being made available to "help us to speed up our fleet renewal".

He notes that BoA "has been profitable for the last nine years, so this money is not for compensating losses, which do not exist, but to fund our fleet renewal and internal restructuring".

The airline plans to dispose of its four ageing 767-300s "as soon as possible".

Confirming the A330's selection for the future long-haul fleet, Estrada notes: "We will incorporate very new, ex-Avianca aircraft built in 2016."

BoA's chief executive Roland Casso had previously indicated that it was evaluating both the 777 and the A330 for its long-haul routes to Miami and Madrid.

The first A330 will arrive in December and the second in June 2020, says Estrada. The total number of A330s "is still under discussion", as the aircraft is significantly larger than the 767.

Government funds will also be used to conclude replacement of BoA's 737-300s with 737-700/800s.

"At this moment, we are operating eight [737] Classic and six NGs. Before the end of this year, we will receive three additional NGs, and by 2021 we will be operating a homogeneous domestic and regional fleet of 14 Boeing 737-700 and -800s," says Estrada.

The long-haul fleet renewal comes shortly after BoA was publicly rebuked by Bolivia's president Evo Morales following a series of technical incidents and flight cancellations.

This year alone BoA has reported nine major incidents to Bolivia's aviation authorities, most recently on 23 August when a wing root fairing panel fell off a 767-300 (registered CP-3086) after take-off from Cochabamba for a domestic flight to Santa Cruz.

Source: Cirium Dashboard