Middle East carrier Emirates has signed a heads of agreement with Boeing to cover the acquisition of ten General Electric GEnx-powered 747-8 freighters.

Under the agreement, signed today during the Farnborough air show, Emirates is scheduled to take delivery of the freighters from 2010. The deal is valued at $3.3 billion. Emirates also signed a letter of intent today with GE covering the supply of 45 GEnx engines to power the new aircraft.

Emirates chairman and chief executive Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum says: “Worldwide air cargo traffic is projected to grow by over 6% annually for the next two decades, tripling current traffic levels.      

“The 747-8 freighters that we are ordering today will put Emirates in a strong position to tap into the growth of cargo traffic and reinforce Dubai’s standing as a growing international hub for air cargo and logistics.”

The airline currently operates nine widebody Boeing 747Fs and Airbus A310Fs and has eight Boeing 777Fs on its order books.

Source: Flight International