Seul - Jeju Air, the largest budget carrier of South Korea, negotiates with Airbus and Boeing to buy 50 single-aisle aircraft as part of its expansion plan on the busiest routes of the Asia-Pacific region.

Boeing seems closer to win the bid since the airline is an all-Boeing operator (38 Boeing 737-800), but a $5.7 billion potential order at list prices may be an expansion opportunity for Airbus on a market where the American manufacturer is the dominant player.

An official from Jeju Air said that the airline was evaluating prices offered by both manufacturers.

Jeju Air cannot confirm such a statement on the company’s potential plane order, but we have requested both Airbus and Boeing for estimates for plane purchases to internally review prices,
an official from Jeju Air told Reuters news agency.

Jeju Air is the biggest low-cost operator of South Korea by market share. The carrier flies to 40 destinations on 65 routes in 14 countries, including one of the busiest routes in the world connecting the capital Seoul to the country's resort island, Jeju.

Airbus and Boeing are competing for new orders as the global civil aviation industry gives signals for exponential growth in the next 20 years.