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Malaysia Airlines signs tentative deal for 787-9s

Malaysia Airlines has signed a tentative agreement with Boeing to order eight 787-9s, and take purchase rights on additional eight 737 Max 8s.

Boeing says that once the agreement is firmed, the Oneworld carrier will convert eight of its existing order for 25 737 Max jets to 787-9s.

The signing of the deal was witnessed by Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak in Washington DC.

"New widebody aircraft are a key to making Malaysia Airlines a premium airline offering a five star product again. The extraordinary range of the 787-9 gives an ability to operate to any point in Europe and some USA destinations in the future from Kuala Lumpur," says Malaysia Airlines' managing director and chief executive Peter Bellew.

The carrier is also taking six Airbus A350-900s from Air Lease corporation to replace its A380s on long-haul routes. Deliveries of those jets will start later this year.

The deal also includes a Boeing's Global Fleet Care service agreement to maintain Malaysia Airlines' existing and future Boeing fleet. Flight Fleets Analyzer shows that its present Boeing fleet is 53 737-800s.

Bellew adds that the fleet care services pact "will allow the two companies to build a world class MRO for the 737 Max, 787 and 737NG based on Malaysia's existing facilities in Kuala Lumpur."

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