A Vietnam Airlines aircraft prepares for landing in Prague, Czech. Photo by Shutterstock/Rebius.
The Ministry of Transport has asked Vietnam Airlines for details about its plan to acquire 50 narrow-body aircraft by 2025.
The national flag wants to buy 50 Airbus A3210/321 or Boeing 737 MAX 8/9/10 aircraft in 2021-2025 at a cost of VND88.13 trillion ($3.83 billion).
It seeks to replace its 26 existing aircraft and expand the fleet by 24, with four or five airplanes delivered every year.
But the ministry said the airline needs to furnish information about the routes it plans to use the new aircraft on and detailed plans about hiring more staff to operate them.
It warned against the purchase of Boeing 737 MAX 8 saying it is still unclear whether the grounding of the model would be reversed.
The carrier also needs to consider that technical issues have been reported in some Pratt Whitney engines used in Airbus A320/321 NEO by some airlines, the ministry said.
Vietnam’s surging travel demand has caused airlines to expand their fleets. Bamboo Airways has inked a deal with Airbus to buy 50 aircraft, while Vietjet last month signed a $140 million loan with foreign banks to finance its Airbus order for 20 aircraft.
Last year the country’s 21 state-run airports handled 103.5 million passengers, according to the Airports Corporation of Vietnam, and the number is set to rise to 112 million this year.