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May 29, 2024
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China Development Bank Financial Leasing Co., Ltd. (“CDB Leasing”) signed lease agreements for three Airbus A321neo with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines.

We are thrilled to be expanding our long-standing relationship with KLM through the addition of these brand new A321neos to their fleet on operating lease,” said Peter Goodman, CDB Aviation’s Chief Commercial Officer. “These next generation aircraft offer the best performance in their category for the group’s network needs, benefiting from the latest technological innovations.”

The three aircraft, equipped with the CFM LEAP-1A30 engines, will be delivered to KLM between September and November 2024. The carrier plans to induct these aircraft on medium-haul European routes from Amsterdam Schiphol, its global hub.

Carriers like KLM, whose fleet renewal strategies are set on ambitious trajectories, value the flexibility and certainty offered by lessors whom they can trust and rely on to execute. With a rapid post-pandemic recovery, lessors have been required to turn to ingenuity and novel approaches in helping airlines reach their fleet expansion and renewal goals. We are very pleased KLM chose our team for these aircraft. The results achieved by our collaboration will be instrumental in helping reach KLM’s decarbonization targets,” concluded Jie Chen, CDB Aviation CEO.


KLM currently has five 737-900s, so the A321neo looks like a replacement for that model. Per ch-Aviation, these 737-900s were delivered in 2001 (4) and 2004 (1), so replacements look right. This also implies the three A321neos ordered are likely to be added to.   The takeaway here is that KLM did not select the MAX 9 as we wrote about in 2021.

author avatar
Addison Schonland
Co-Founder AirInsight. My previous life includes stints at Shell South Africa, CIC Research, and PA Consulting. Got bitten by the aviation bug and ended up an Avgeek. Then the data bug got me, making me a curious Avgeek seeking data-driven logic. Also, I appreciate conversations with smart people from whom I learn so much. Summary: I am very fortunate to work with and converse with great people.

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