China Southern Airlines Co. agreed to buy Dreamliners valued at $3.2 billion in list prices from Boeing Co. as Asia’s biggest carrier by passenger numbers expands its fleet to meet a surge in travel demand.
The carrier chose the 787-9 model, with a list price of $271 million each, according to a Hong Kong stock exchange statement Wednesday. The planes will be delivered between 2018 and 2020 and funded using cash and loans from commercial banks, the Guangzhou, China-based airline said in the statement.
China Southern and its subsidiaries have ordered more than $15 billion of new aircraft from Boeing and Airbus Group SE in the past year as more people fly in the world’s most populous nation. Last year, Chinese President Xi Jinping signed an order for 300 jets valued at $38 billion on a state visit to the U.S. as Chinese carriers expand their fleet in a nation set to become the biggest travel market in two decades.
China Southern already flies 16 Dreamliners on operating and financial lease, according to data the airline released in August. The carrier had a total fleet of 684 planes, the largest in Asia.