Riyadh Air, the new Saudi airline founded by the Public Investment Fund (“PIF”), announced a multibillion-dollar purchase for up to 72 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner planes.
This unprecedented order for a new airline – 39 confirmed aircraft with an option to purchase a further 33 widebodies 787-9 Dreamliner jets – significantly indicates Saudi Arabia’s aim to become a global aviation hub.
This arrangement is part of Saudi Arabia’s larger strategic ambition to make the nation a worldwide aviation hub. National carriers confirmed their plan to acquire up to 121 787 Dreamliners, making this the sixth-largest commercial order by value in Boeing’s history.
This will help the government meet its 2030 objective of serving 330 million passengers and attracting 100 million visitors.
In terms of economic impact, the deal is expected to support nearly 100,000 direct and indirect jobs in the United States and more than 300 suppliers from 38 states, including 145 U.S. small businesses. In comparison, the new airline in Saudi Arabia is expected to add USD20 billion to non-oil GDP growth and create more than 200,000 direct and indirect jobs.
The order also emphasises the significance of Riyadh Air’s environmental goals. It intends to run one of the world’s newest and most sustainable airline fleets while adhering to the most stringent noise regulations.
With this agreement with The Boeing Company, the new world-class airline plans to link millions of leisure and business travellers to more than 100 destinations by 2030.
Riyadh Air will be at the forefront of technology, allowing digital innovation at every visitor touchpoint while providing an excellent guest experience anchored by authentic, warm Saudi hospitality.
“This is a momentous day for PIF and Riyadh Air and highlights our determination to extend Saudi Arabia’s connectivity with the world significantly. Our stated commitment is to create a world-class airline, and this partnership with Boeing in building the fleet is the next step in achieving the aspirations of Saudi Arabia as a global transportation hub,” said His Excellency Yasir Al-Rumayyan Governor of the PIF and Chairman of Riyadh Air said.
Stan Deal, President and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, said: “This is a significant order that will support Riyadh Air’s commitment to delivering a world-class travel experience while supporting American aerospace manufacturing jobs at Boeing and across our supply chain” said Stan Deal, President and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
“The new airline reflects the ambitious vision of Saudi Arabia to be at the core of shaping the future of global air travel and be a true disrupter in terms of the guest experience. Riyadh Air’s commitment to its guests will see digital innovation and authentic Saudi hospitality integration to deliver a seamless travel experience,” said Tony Douglas, CEO of Riyadh Air.
Riyadh Air will equip its planes with the most modern, cutting-edge features and unique, best-in-class cabin designs and experiences, such as next-generation digital in-flight entertainment systems and networking solutions. The widebody aircraft will be delivered for the first time in early 2025.
Riyadh Air will be a digitally-led full-service airline focusing on sustainability, reflecting Saudi Arabia’s revolutionary Vision 2030 ambitions. It will function following the country’s efforts to achieve nett zero emissions. The 787-9 Dreamliner model is designed considering the environment, including CO2 emissions, fuel economy, and noise standards.
The new airline was formally established early last week and will serve as a lever to help Saudi Arabia achieve its Vision 2030 goals.