Air Lease Corporation has signed comprehensive restructuring agreements with Vietnam Airlines covering the leasing of 18 aircraft, including 12 Airbus A321neo and six Boeing 787-10 aircraft. These agreements extend terms and revise lease economics closely tailored to the recovering economies and air travel in Vietnam and Southeast Asia. Air Lease is currently the largest aircraft lessor for Vietnam Airlines, with a total of 16 aircraft belonging to the latest generation of aircraft lines, including 12 A321neo aircraft and four B787-10 aircraft in operation.
With a fleet of more than 100 aircraft, Vietnam Airlines has a relatively high proportion of aircraft costs in its total cost structure. With many flight routes suspended because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the large-scale fleet has created considerable pressure for the airline. Therefore, restructuring the fleet and cutting costs are strategic short-term goals for the airline.
Vietnam Airlines said earlier this month it plans to sell 15 planes this months and 12 others in the next two years, its CEO said. “Vietnam Airlines plans to sell nine A321s and six ATR-72s in December. From 2022 to late 2023, an additional 12 A321s will be sold,” CEO Le Hong Ha told the extraordinary general meeting of shareholders Tuesday (14 December). The plan is aimed at reducing the number of aircraft Vietnam currently owns and accelerating its fleet modernisation, replacing planes aged over 12 years, he explained, predicting that there would still be an aircraft surplus by 2025. Vietnam Airlines is estimated to have an excess of eight wide-body planes and 22 narrow-body equivalents next year. It currently has 106 aircraft, including 29 wide-body planes, and seven ATR-72s. It has sold two A321s in the last five months.