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October 5, 2011

Ethiopian Airlines Orders Four Boeing 777 Freighters

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Artist rendering of a new Ethiopian Airlines Cargo Boeing 777 Freighter

Ethiopian Airlines and Boeing have announced an order of four Boeing 777 Freighters worth $1.1 billion at list prices.

The orders were previously listed in Boeing’s public online order book but had been attributed to an unidentified customer.

When the planes are delivered, Ethiopian will become the first African carrier to operate the twin-engine cargo planes. The airline says they will use the new jets to replace aging Boeing 747, 757 and MD-11 freighters and increase cargo capacity to satisfy growing demand in Africa.

Ethiopian has been expanding it fleet of new Boeing aircraft rapidly over the past few years, taking delivery of five new 777-200LR’s and ordering 10 787-8 Dreamliners.

“As the largest African cargo carrier operating in some of the fastest growing trade lanes of the world – between Africa and Europe, Middle East and Asia – the new 777 Freighter fleet will significantly enhance our tonnage and range capabilities,” said Tewolde Gebremariam, CEO of Ethiopian Airlines in a statement. “The proven operational and economical efficiency of these airplanes will reposition Ethiopian Cargo in a stronger place to continue winning in this hypercompetitive market.”

The 777 Freighter is the largest and longest-range twin-engine cargo jet in the world, flying up to 4,900 nm (9,070 km) fully loaded to 225,200 lbs (102 metric tons).

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