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aviationOctober 11, 2020

Lebanese carrier MEA takes delivery of new A321neo from Airbus


Lebanon-based Middle East Airlines (MEA) said it has taken delivery of Airbus’ A320 Family aircraft with manufacturer serial number 10,000 from the Airbus' base in Toulouse.

This is the third A321neo aircraft to join the all Airbus MEA fleet, thus taking its total to 18 aircraft.

The Lebanese carrier received its first A321neo aircraft earlier this year and will be taking another six A321neos over the coming months.

The handover of the aircraft took place in Toulouse in the presence of Mohamad El Hout, Chairman and Director General of MEA.

Speaking on the occasion, El Hout said: 'We are honoured to receive the state of the art A321neo with its distinctive serial number 10,000 coinciding with the 75th anniversary of Middle East Airlines and specially after receiving MSN5,000 back in 2012.'

'Since we first acquired an A320 Family aircraft in 2003, we have not only benefited from the outstanding operational efficiency of the aircraft but were also the first airline to introduce the wide-body cabin product on a single-aisle aircraft which has become a trend in the airline industry afterwards,' he stated.

The new A321neo is powered by Pratt & Whitney’s PurePower PW1100G-JM geared turbofan engines and is configured in a comfortable two-class layout with 28 seats in Business and 132 seats in Economy Class.

It is also equipped with the latest generation in-flight entertainment system and high-speed connectivity. Incorporating the latest engines, aerodynamic advances, and cabin innovations, the A321neo offers a reduction in fuel consumption of 20% as well as a 50% noise reduction.

'Unfortunately, due to the current situation in Lebanon, this time we will not be able to celebrate the delivery of the MSN10,000 in Beirut, as we did with the MSN5,000, but I am sure that in these challenging circumstances, it is a ray of light, hope and motivation to surpass our nation’s difficulties,' he added.

The Lebanese airline said it had taken delivery of MSN5,000 in 2012, after 23 years of Airbus A320 Family production. The next 5,000 took just another eight years to mark this significant MSN10,000 milestone - again with MEA.

This achievement is a testimony of the industrial advancement and capabilities by Airbus and the popularity of the latest, even more efficient NEO version of the aircraft, it added.

Airbus Chief Commercial Officer Christian Scherer said: 'We are proud to continue building our long-standing partnership with MEA which already operates one of the most modern Airbus fleets in the world.'

'As an all Airbus operator, MEA benefits from the Airbus’ unique fleet commonality between aircraft families and is now adding the third highly fuel-efficient A321neo to step up the game. I admire the agility and the resilience of this company in this complex environment,' observed Scherer.

'Delivering MSN10,000 is a milestone that demonstrates the success of the A320 Family and we thank our customers globally for their confidence in our products,' he added.

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