China Eastern Airlines has taken delivery of its first Airbus A350-900.
The airline will begin flying the new aircraft from Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport to Beijing Capital International Airport as well as to other domestic destinations including Guangzhou and Chengdu until January 2019, when the A350 will be deployed on international long-haul routes from Shanghai Pudong to Europe, Australia and North America.
China Eastern is due to receive two more A350-900s this year, with the last of the 20 aircraft ordered scheduled to be delivered by 2022.
The carrier already operates the largest Airbus fleet in Asia, consisting of 306 A320 family aircraft and 50 A330 family aircraft.
Airbus has received a total of 890 firm orders for the A350 XWB family from 47 customers worldwide to date, with carriers in the Asia-Pacific region accounting for over a third of total sales for the type.
Airbus received regulatory approval from the Civil Aviation Administration of China to deliver A350s to mainland Chinese carriers in August 2018.