Emirates to raise $517 mln Islamic loan - paper

DUBAI Tue Feb 7, 2012 2:11am EST

DUBAI Feb 7 (Reuters) - Dubai's Emirates airline has hired three local banks to arrange a 1.9 billion dirhams ($517.3 million) Islamic loan facility to finance two of its planes, Arabic newspaper Al Bayan reported on Tuesday.

The Dubai government-owned airline has asked Dubai Islamic Bank, Ajman Bank and Al Hilal Bank to arrange the financing deal for a Boeing 777-300 and an Airbus A380 superjumbo, the paper said quoting unnamed banking sources.

Emirates was not immediately available for comment.

The rapidly expanding Gulf Arab carrier said in November that it was eyeing the more resilient Islamic finance market to fund aircraft deliveries, as international banks back out of plane deals because of the euro zone debt crisis.

Emirates placed a blockbuster order for 50 Boeing 777 jetliners at the Dubai Air Show last year and became one of the largest customer of the Airbus A30 superjumbos.

The facility will be a 12-year loan and the banks have started the preparation of loan transfers since January, the report said. ($1 = 3.6730 UAE dirhams)

(Reporting by Martina Fuchs, Writing by Praveen Menon; Editing by Dinesh Nair)