British Midland (BM) has selected the Rolls-Royce Trent 772B for its new Airbus A330-200s, in a deal worth $350 million. BM, which has four A330s on firm order and options on eight more, will take two of the aircraft through an operating lease deal with International Lease Finance (ILFC). Deliveries will begin next April. BWIA West Indies Airways has begun seeking buyers for its four Lockheed L-1011 TriStar 500s, with Cabot Aviation appointed to remarket them. Boeing 767-300ERs or Airbus A340s are the leading candidates to replace the ageing, 20-year-old tri-jets. Air New Zealand has ordered an additional ATR 72-500 for its Mount Cook subsidiary. Swissair will boost its Airbus A340-600 fleet with the lease of two examples from ILFC. The airline, which has nine A340-600s on order directly from Airbus, will take the two aircraft from ILFC in February and March 2004 on 10 year leases. Finnair says it will standardise on the A320 for its short-haul fleet, and will expand its acquisition beyond the current 12 firm orders either through the confirmation of its 24 options or operating leases. The airline says it is also studying the possibility of a joint purchase with other oneworld alliance partners. Air Seychelles has concluded a deal with ILFC to acquire a Boeing 737-700 on eight-year lease and swap a leased Boeing 767-200ER for a larger -300ER next year. Ansett New Zealand is acquiring two used Bombardier Dash 8 Q300s, on lease from the manufacturer. UK leasing specialist Airep has taken delivery of the first of three Tupolev Tu-204-100Cs. The aircraft is operating proving flights for TNT from its Liége hub. Flight International's sister on-line news service Air Transport Intelligence reports that Philippine Airlines' (PAL) creditors are to allow the carrier to re-introduce two Airbus A340-300s and retain a further two that were to have been withdrawn from service this month.

Source: Flight International