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WFW Asia Practice advises Air Astana on the financing of seven aircraft

22 June 2015

Kazakhstan’s principal airline and flag carrier, Air Astana, was advised by Watson Farley & Williams Asia Practice LLP (“WFWAP”) in Singapore on the long-term lease agreements for seven A320 neo family aircraft with Air Lease Corporation (“ALC”).

Five of the aircraft will be A321 neo regional-line or long-range versions, while the remaining two will be A320 neos. The first of the A320 neo aircraft is scheduled for delivery in spring 2016, with the remaining six aircraft set for delivery in 2018 and 2019. The new aircraft will form a significant part of Air Astana’s total fleet.

Air Astana commenced commercials operations in 2002 and is a joint venture between Kazakhstan’s sovereign wealth fund and BAE Systems PLC. The airline operates primarily out of main hubs Almaty International Airport and Astana International Airport, and also from secondary hub Atyrau Airport. This year Air Astana won its fourth consecutive “Best Airline in Central Asia/India” award at the Skytrax World Airline Awards.

The WFWAP team was led by senior associate Peter Mitchell. Singapore finance partner Siva Subramaniam said: “Air Astana is a highly regarded and growing airline and we are pleased to have advised them on this significant transaction, which will help ensure the airline can continue to grow and move forward.”