Hangzhou-based Loong Air plans to lease five Airbus A320s from BOC Aviation in an effort to facilitate rapid growth. According to BOC Aviation, the aircraft are scheduled to be delivered in 2017.

Loong Air chairman Liu Qihong said the lease agreement “is an important measure for us to answer to Zhejiang provincial government’s requirements, implement a strong civil aviation province strategy, help boost Zhejiang civil aviation industry development, and build Hangzhou Airport as a regional hub.” He added that Loong Air will introduce widebody aircraft and open medium- and long-haul international routes “at the proper time based on the needs of economic growth and external relations in Zhejiang Province.”

Launched in December 2016, Loong Air operates 23 aircraft on 116 domestic routes and international routes to neighboring Southeast Asian countries, of which 43 routes originate from Hangzhou.