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Japan's ANA to Order Four Boeing 777-300ER Jets

Japan's All Nippon Airways said Tuesday it is ordering four Boeing 777-300ER jets to update its equipment and pursue its plans to rationalize its fleet.

The new Boeing jets are slated for delivery in fiscal 2009, Japan's second-largest air carrier said in a statement. The deal has a catalogue value of about $1 billion (0.76 billion euros) and brings ANA's total orders for the 777-300ER to seventeen, it said.

As part of its plans, the carrier said it had also sold three 747-400 jets to Hong Kong's Oasis Growth Income and Investments of Hong Kong, for operation by Oasis Hong Kong Airlines.

ANA Executive Vice President for Purchasing Tomohiro Hidema said in a statement that Tuesday's decisions were aimed at fulfilling the company's plans to both rationalize its fleet down to three types of aircraft and "fly the most modern, efficient and passenger-pleasing aircraft available."

ANA plans to operate the four additional 777-300ERs on intercontinental routes, where it already flies eight of the aircraft, the company said.

ANA announced the deal after trading closed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, where its share price finished 4.5% higher at 464 yen ($3.99; 3.05 euros).

In January, ANA reported an 8.5% decline in profit for the third quarter of the fiscal year ending this month due to high jet fuel prices and extra costs for the disposal of aircraft and equipment.

But the company also said revenue rose 9.9% thanks to strong demand for travel, buoyed by continued recovery in Japan's economy and a gradual increase in frequency on certain routes.

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