Kuala Lumpur - Malaysia Airlines signed a letter of intent with the leasing company AerCap to rent six Airbus A330-200 for six years, which have been previously operated by Air Berlin.

The Oneworld alliance company points out that leasing the six Airbus aircraft provide the time needed to wait for new aircraft to arrive in its fleet.

In a statement dated 27 September 2017, Malaysia's Kuala Lumpur-based national airline operator said that the six A330-200 would be leased from February 2018 to 2023 and would replace Boeing 737-800s in the fleet, which will be returned to their leasing companies. The A330-200 will be used to strengthen medium-haul, high-demand routes such as Mumbai and Delhi in India or Perth in Australia. Equipped with the same Pratt & Whitney engines as the fifteen A330-300s in service at Malaysia Airlines, they will be configured with 19 seats in business class and 268 seats in economy, with a brand new in-flight entertainment system.

The Oneworld alliance company points out that leasing the six Airbus aircraft provide the time needed to wait for new aircraft to arrive in its fleet. In particular, Malaysia Airlines has signed a letter of intent for eight Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners and eight 737 MAX 8. The first A350-900 (out of 6 expected) will be delivered this year in November.

"Leasing rates are incredibly competitive at the moment, and we are just opportunistic by hiring the A330-200 at this point," said the company CEO Peter Bellew. He also congratulated AerCap on their quick reaction to the big planes of the Air Berlin, which is bankrupt and whose last long-haul flights are scheduled on 15 October.