CEBU Air, Inc., operator of budget carrier Cebu Pacific, has opted to proceed with ordering more aircraft engines from American aerospace manufacturer Pratt & Whitney (P&W).

This decision comes amid the grounding of several of the budget carrier’s aircraft due to issues related to the engines.

Last year, Cebu Air said that it would lower its fleet growth rate for 2024 as engine maker P&W inspected A320/321 NEO aircraft engines worldwide following suspected issues.

Between 10 and 20 aircraft are currently parked for maintenance due to the P&W issue, the company said earlier.

On Tuesday, the company said it had signed a memorandum of understanding with P&W to provide Cebu Pacific with engines for its 15 narrow-body jets such as A320/A321 fleets.

“This aims to finalize our current order book and help secure our growth up to 2027,” Cebu Pacific Chief Executive Officer Michael B. Szucs told the stock exchange on Tuesday.

“In doing so, it also clears the way for us to now focus on the longer-term growth through our major fleet Request for Proposals that are currently underway,” he added.

For his part, Rick Deurloo, president of commercial engines at P&W, said: “We appreciate Cebu Pacific’s continued confidence in Pratt & Whitney since they initially selected the GTF engine in 2012.”

The aircraft engine maker will start making deliveries in 2025, he said.

“With deliveries for this most recent order starting in 2025, the GTF engine will provide even more fuel and carbon emissions savings,” Mr. Deurloo said.

Cebu Pacific said the agreement would allow it to strengthen its operations as it plans to explore regional markets in Southeast Asia, China, and Japan to cater the growing travel demand. — Ashley Erika O. Jose