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Xiamen Airlines plans rapid expansion
By Katie Cantle ( )

Xiamen Airlines is planning to expand rapidly this year as it grows its fleet and takes advantage of the booming demand in the Asian market.

The Xiamen-based carrier operates 87 Boeing aircraft and is scheduled to take delivery of an additional 15 this year. The carrier committed to purchasing 40 Boeing 737-800NGs in 2012 and plans to grow its fleet to 200 aircraft by the end of 2020.

It plans to boost international capacity 14.7 percent this year and open new routes including Zhengzhou-Xiamen-Jakarta, Dalian-Xiamen-Kuala Lumpur, Dalian-Xiamen-Singapore, Tianjin-Fuzhou-Kuala Lumpur, Dalian-Xiamen- Kuala Lumpur and Dalian-Xiamen-Singapore.

The carrier will also increase domestic capacity 18.6 percent this year and increase flight frequency on routes including Xiamen-Kunming, Xiamen-Chongqing-Lhasa and Xiamen-Zhengzhou-Xining.

Xiamen Airlines has had consecutive profits for 26 years. It posted an operating profit of 2 billion yuan ($317.4 million) in 2012, up 17 percent from 1.7 billion yuan in 2011. It aims to transport more than 20 million passengers this year, and cargo traffic volume is targeted at more than 200,000 tons.