Asia Aviation Plc, a major shareholder in budget carrier Thai AirAsia, said on Thursday the airline would take delivery of two new Airbus A320 NEOs in the fourth quarter, raising its fleet to 51 planes at the end of this year.

Thai AirAsia, the country’s largest budget airline, also plans to operate new routes in Indochina and Indian markets such as Phuket to Siem Reap in Cambodia and Bangkok to Kolkata in India in the last quarter, it said in a statement.

The two new planes will push up the capacity up to 186 seats from the previous model of 180 seats and save fuel burn up to 15%, the company said.

The budget carrier also plans to add the frequency on well-performed routes such as Bangkok to tourist island Phuket, southern province of Surat Thani and northeastern province of Udon Thani.

With the fleet expansion, Thai AirAsia expects to attract more customers and secure market share to maintain its leading position in the low-fare airline segment in Thailand.

Asia Aviation reported a net profit of 397 million baht for July-September, up 333% from a year earlier, due to strong passenger growth and lower fuel costs.

Thai AirAsia posted a third-quarter net profit of 729 million baht, up 318% from a year earlier, with revenue rising 12% to 8.15 billion baht.

Asia Aviation owns 55% in Thai AirAsia, while Malaysia’s AirAsia Bhd has an indirect 45% stake.

AAV shares rose five satang to 7.15 baht in trade worth 69.25 million baht on Thursday.



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