Xiamen Air gets its first Dreamliner

Updated: 2014-09-01 10:53

By Linda Deng in Seattle(China Daily USA)

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Boeing aircraft and Xiamen Airlines celebrated the delivery of the airline's first 787 Dreamliner at Boeing Everett Delivery Center on Aug 29.

"We are excited to receive our first 787 Dreamliner which is also the first widebody airplane of our all-Boeing fleet," said Che Shanglun, president and chairman of Xiamen Airlines.

"With the innovative technology and exceptional efficiency, the 787 Dreamliner will not only revolutionize the inflight experience for our passengers but is also the key to our further growth and international expansion."

The Boeing 787 is the world's most technologically advanced airplane with composite materials making up 50 percent of the primary structure by weight, including the fuselage and wing.

In addition to bringing big-jet ranges to midsize airplanes, the 787 will provide unrivaled fuel efficiency, using 20 percent less fuel than today's similarly sized airplanes.

With the delivery of its first 787-8, Xiamen Airlines becomes the third Chinese airline to operate the 787. The airline will take delivery of the another five 787s by the end of 2015 and the first Xiamen 787 will initially fly flightsfrom Xiamen and Fuzhou to Beijing.

Formed in 1984 asChina'sfirst joint venture between the Civil Aviation Administration ofChina(CAAC) and a municipal government, Xiamen Airlines started services in 1985 with two 737-200s serving three cities.

The carrier has grown into China'ssixth largest airline serving 218 domestic routes and 26 international and regional routes.

The airline will use the 787 on long-haul routes from itsFujianprovince base to Europe, North America and Australia.

"Our fleet will hit the 200-plane benchmark by 2020, but our goal is to evolve from a small regional carrier into a major international player in quality rather than in fleet size," said Che.

Xiamen Air gets its first Dreamliner

"Xiamen Airlines is a valued Boeing customer and we are delighted to celebrate the airline's 30thanniversary with its first 787 Dreamliner," saidIhssane Mounir, senior vice-president of Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

"We look forward to strengthening our partnership withXiamenas the airline continues to expand its global long-haul fleet."

As part of Xiamen Airlines' 12thfive-year plan ending 2015, the carrier plans to grow its fleet to 150 airplanes, including six 787s. The 787 is the most advanced airplane in commercial aviation and will help Xiamen Airlines develop more point-to-point routes globally, while also establishing the airline as an emerging force in the commercial aviation market.

To support Xiamen Airlines' 787, Boeing will provide a comprehensive suite of support and services that includes flight training, airplane health management, electronic charts and navigation data and a maintenance performance toolbox through its commercial aviation services business.

Xiamen Airlines isChina'sonly all-Boeing carrier. InNovember 2013, the airline took delivery of its 100th Boeing airplane, a next-generation 737-800.

Xiamen Airlines' rapid growth is testimony to the tremendous development ofChina'sairline business.At the end of 2012,Chinahad more than 40 airlines and the civil aviation industry as a whole had more than 2,000 airplanes.

Boeing projects investments of nearly$800 billioninChinafor 5,580 new commercial airplanes to be delivered during the next 20 years. The first 787 delivered to Xiamen Airlines is the 19th 787 that has been delivered to China by Boeing.


 Xiamen Air gets its first Dreamliner

Che Shanglun, president and chairman of Xiamen Airlines, and Raymond Conner, vice-chairman of The Boeing Company and president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, cut the ribbon in a ceremony delivering the first 787 Dreamliner to Xiamen Airlines at Paine Field in Everett, Washington on Aug 29. Deng Linda / China Daily

(China Daily USA 09/01/2014 page1)