Embraer has announced the signing of a contract with the Government of Kiribati, in partnership with its national airline, Air Kiribati, for two firm orders for the E190-E2 E-Jets and two purchase rights for the same model. Scheduled for a 2019 delivery, the E190-E2 will enable the carrier to fly longer domestic and international routes than it currently does with its turboprop fleet.
This order comes after a three-week Asia Pacific tour of the ‘Shark’ liveried E190-E2 in October, which included a stop in Tarawa, the capital of Kiribati. Spanning four time zones and comprised of more than 30 islands, Kiribati is the only country in the world to be in all four hemispheres.
Cesar Pereira, asia pacific vice president at Embraer Commercial Aviation, said: “We warmly welcome Air Kiribati to the Embraer family and we will work closely with the airline as they transition to the E190-E2 through our extensive entry-into-service package and world-class support team in the region… Flying in the Pacific, over large bodies of water, requires outstanding range, performance and ample cargo capacity. Air Kiribati’s selection of the E190-E2 is yet another validation of the world’s most efficient single-aisle jet design, which exceeds these requirements and will enable the airline to enhance its flight frequency and to boost its network.”
With a maximum range of up to 2,850 nautical miles, the E190-E2 can operate over the vast expanse of Kiribati, including from Tarawa directly to Kiritimati (Christmas) Island, one of the most challenging routes in the Pacific. The current domestic connection from Tarawa to Kiritimati includes an international stopover in Fiji.
The E190-E2 is part of Embraer’s new generation E-Jets E2 family of aircraft, which can seat between 70 to 150 passengers. The E190-E2 can seat up to 114 passengers and was the first member of the E-Jets E2 family of aircraft to enter service in April 2018.