Biman Bangladesh Airlines (BG, Dhaka) is planning to add a further four B787s and two Dash 8-400s, chief executive Mokabbir Hossain told The Business Standard during the carrier's 48th-anniversary celebrations.

The Bangladeshi flag carrier is hoping to negotiate a beneficial agreement with Boeing for four B787s previously ordered but not taken up by an unnamed Indian airline.

According to the ch-aviation fleets advanced module, the only B787s on order directly from Boeing by Indian airlines are ten B787-9s for Jet Airways (JAI, Mumbai Int'l) and six such aircraft for Vistara (UK, Delhi Int'l). While the latter airline is in the process of taking deliveries of the aircraft, the ten units ordered by Jet Airways will, in all likelihood, not be delivered given the carrier's bankruptcy and so far failed attempts to restart.

In October 2019, Biman secured two B787-9s not taken up by Hainan Airlines (HU, Haikou). The aircraft were reportedly acquired at very preferential prices. They started operating for Biman on January 5-6, 2020, Flightradar24 ADS-B data shows.

Biman also operates four B787-8s.

The airline is hoping to expand its international network with the enlarged fleet of B787s. In early January, it relaunched services to Manchester Int'l. Going forward, it hopes to secure traffic rights to extend this service to New York with fifth-freedom traffic rights between the US and the UK. Similar flights via Manchester are planned to Toronto Pearson.

According to the ch-aviation schedules module, the only other intercontinental destination of Biman currently is London Heathrow. The airline is also studying launching new flights to Guangzhou (its first destination in China), Tokyo, Colombo Int'l, Malé, and Chennai.

The carrier's long-haul fleet also includes four B777-300(ER)s.

The Bangladeshi flag carrier already has three Dash 8-400s on order from De Havilland Aircraft of Canada (with deliveries scheduled in June 2020) but is looking to add a further two. The new turboprops will significantly expand the airline's regional fleet. Biman currently operates two Dash 8s but one of them is due to be retired during the course of 2020 as its lease expires.

One of the existing Dash 8s is an 11.8-year old unit leased from Nordic Aviation Capital and the other is 8.8-years-old on lease from Smart Aviation.

Adding more Dash 8s will allow the airline to free up its six B737-800s to operate medium-haul routes. Currently, due to the shortage of regional aircraft, the Boeing narrowbodies are sometimes used on domestic routes without sufficient demand.