The event, which pulled in close to 85,000 visitors, saw Boeing and Airbus bag billion-dollar aircraft orders from airlines. Image Credit: Clint Egbert/Gulf News

Dubai: The Dubai Airshow — the industry’s first aviation event during the pandemic — concluded yesterday.

The event, which pulled in close to 85,000 visitors, saw Boeing and Airbus bag billion-dollar aircraft orders from airlines, who are betting big on the aviation sector’s long-term recovery.

The European plane maker said customers had placed orders and commitments totalling 408 aircraft. The agreements covered a full range of commercial aircraft models, including the soon-to-be-launched freighter version of the A350 aircraft.

Some big deals were inked over the last week:

1) Indigo Partners, the owner of low-cost carrier Wizz Air and Mexico’s Volaris, announced an order for 255 additional A321neo aircraft. The order is valued at $33 billion, according to the latest list price published by Airbus.

2) India’s newest airline Akasa Air placed a near $9 billion order with Boeing for 72 737 MAX aircraft to build its fleet. The order includes two variants from the 737 MAX family, the 737-8 and the high-capacity 737-8-200.

3) Kuwait’s Jazeera Airways placed an order for 20 Airbus A320neos and 8 A321neos — the deal is valued at roughly $3.3 billion at current list prices.

4) Boeing and Air Tanzania struck a deal for a 787-8 Dreamliner, a 767-300 Freighter and two 737 MAX jets. The order is valued at more than $726 million at list price.

Emirates inks deals

Emirates airline said its A380 aircraft with the UAE’s 50th anniversary livery attracted over 17,000 visitors.

Over the course of the event, the Dubai-based airline made a number of significant announcements, including the decision to retrofit 105 of its Boeing 777 and A380 aircraft with ‘Premium Economy’ seats.

Emirates, which plans to introduce two new Boeing 777 freighters into its fleet in 2022, signed an agreement with Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) for the conversion of four Boeing 777-300ER passenger aircraft into full freighters, starting in early 2023.

“Emirates has concluded the 2021 edition of the Dubai Airshow on a positive note, culminating a week of investment announcements, new partnerships forged, and the strengthening of established connections as key aviation players from around the world came together in Dubai to mark a turning point in the industry’s recovery,” said the airline in a statement.