UAE airlines are expected to steal the show at the region's premiere aircraft exhibition.
Airbus and Boeing are set to battle for new orders from local and regional carriers at the Dubai Airshow, which opens today in the wake of Boeing's 737 MAX grounding, slow global economy and gloomy geopolitical situation.
Aviation analysts said a good number of new orders are expected at the biennial civil and military exhibition running from November 17 to 21. Some defence deals could also give a shot in the arm for the mega event.
Sharjah-based low-cost carrier Air Arabia is likely to announce a deal for 100+ aircraft of the neo family. Air Arabia's likely order may include an option to mix the A321neo and A321nex XLR models.
Emirates airline is also expected to sign a final order for Airbus A350 and A330neo jets in addition to confirming its $15 billion commitment for 40 Boeing 787 Dreamliners and a possible reshuffle in an order for 777X, which is expected to be operational by early 2021.
In addition to the UAE airlines, Kuwait's Jazeera Airways and Oman's SalamAir might also opt for the A320neo for new orders. Kuwait's Alafco could also sign an order for the A320neo aircraft, aviation sources said.
The 2017 edition of the Dubai Airshow witnessed a strong order book of $113.8 billion (Dh418 billion), which included $49.5 billion IndiGo Partners order for 430 aircraft from Airbus and $27 billion flydubai deal with Boeing. This year's edition will see more than 1,300 exhibitors, 87,000-plus trade visitors and up to 165 aircraft on display during the five-day exhibition.