Egypt buys a new presidential plane for half a billion dollars

Egyptian publisher Hisham Qassem on Tuesday revealed that the Egyptian authorities have replaced the Airbus presidential plane, which entered service 28 years ago, with a new Boeing 747-8i, which was purchased in 2021.

Qassem also said in a post on his official Facebook page, that the new plane “was purchased for the amount of 487 million US dollars, which means approximately 8 billion Egyptian pounds, (the dollar was 16 Egyptian pounds at the time) in addition to the cost of its processing, which the news did not specify.

“Fast-forward to the fall of 2021. The 747-8i has a new registration of SU-EGY and, after some Paine Field testing, was ferried to Hamburg, Germany for a new interior,” a report by the simple flying website stated

The simple flying website, which specializes in aviation news, revealed that the new Egyptian presidential plane flew to Shannon, Ireland, in order to be painted by one of the companies specialized in painting aircraft.

The website also said in its report, which was published on Monday, August 29 that Egypt is about to join the exclusive club of countries that uses the Boeing 747-8 to transport senior government officials.

Timothy E. Kaldas, a policy fellow at the Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy, commented on this in a tweet, saying:

Egypt’s govt struggling to negotiate its 3rd IMF bailout in 6 years while it estimates nearly a third of Egyptians in poverty and World Bank estimates 60% of Egyptians live near or below poverty line. Of course it’s time to buy a high end 747 for exec travel.

“The 747-8i will be painted by IAC in Shannon, Ireland. IAC Aircraft Painting recently built a second hangar big enough to accommodate the only jetliner larger than the 747-8i in the Airbus A380 in 2020,” the report read.