CEBU Air Inc. (stock symbol CEB) has secured the approval of the Board of Investments (BOI) for the listed firm’s fleet expansion.
In a statement, the investment promotion agency said it has given the green light to CEB’s P6.1-billion air-transport project under the public infrastructure and logistics activity of the 2017 Investment Priorities Plan (IPP).
The project involves the recent acquisition by CEB of one Airbus 330 (A330) aircraft on a finance lease scheme with Airbus SAS France. With this acquisition, CEB, which operates budget carrier Cebu Pacific, now has 4 A319s, 36 A320s, 8 A330s, 8 ATR 72-500s and 3 ATR 72-600s; a total 59 aircrafts in its current fleet.
The A330 is a long-range, twin-aisle commercial passenger aircraft manufactured by Airbus with a maximum passenger capacity of 436.
Commercial operation of CEB’s new aircraft began in May this year, servicing routes to Incheon and Bangkok.
The expansion of operations added 186 new jobs to CEB’s current rooster of around 3,400 personnel.
“The growth of the air transport industry remains robust,” Trade Undersecretary and BOI Managing Head Ceferino S. Rodolfo said in a statement.
According to Rodolfo, the approval of CEB’s project will allow the firm “to further expand its operation as a major budget carrier, stimulating passenger-traffic growth with more affordable fares from these strategic routes.”
“More tourists in Asian countries, especially from Korea, are expected to come in with this new project,” Rodolfo said.
CEB, which has a market capitalization of P61.2 billion, closed higher at P101.90, from P100.20 at the market’s opening on Monday.