PRESS RELEASE

CALC Receives AAA from Major Chinese Credit Agency Dagong Global

31 Aug 2020

Hong Kong, 31 August 2020 - China Aircraft Leasing Group Holdings Limited ("CALC" or the “Company”, HKSE stock code: 01848; together with subsidiaries, the “Group”), a full value chain aircraft solutions provider for the global aviation industry, is pleased to announced that the Group has received a corporate credit rating of AAA by Dagong Global Credit Rating (“Dagong Global”), one of the top credit rating agencies in China, confirming its positive outlook. This is the first time CALC receives a corporate credit rating. It is also the first triple A corporate rating Dagong Global has assigned to an operating aircraft lessor against a backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic. This has not only illustrated the recognition of CALC’s integrated strengths by an authoritative ratings agency, but also highlighted CALC’s strong fundamentals which support its continued business development in spite of the challenging environment for the aviation industry.

 

After conducting in-depth due diligence on CALC’s asset quality, business model, operating capabilities, financial strength, shareholder background, governance standards and track record, Dogong Global outlined its assessments in a ratings report asserting that the Group has established a relatively significant market leadership with a sufficient aircraft order book, and has assembled diversified financing channels with its debt interests well covered by recurring profits. In addition, its major shareholder China Everbright Limited and related parties have continued to render support on CALC in the areas of liquidity, business expansion and strategic development, thereby constituting favorable conditions for CALC's future business expansion.

 

Mr. Zhao Wei, Chairman of CALC Group, said, “This rating fully demonstrates CALC’s solid business fundamentals and long-term development prospects. Though the aviation market is facing stringent challenges in 2020, CALC has managed to turn this crisis into an opportunity, well demonstrating its resilience. CALC is one of the four core enterprises of China Everbright Limited, and we will provide strong support for its continued expansion along the aviation value chain as we have always done, and facilitate it to emerge as a world leading full value chain aircraft solutions provider.”

 

Mr. Mike Poon, CEO of CALC Group, said, “CALC has been dedicated in strengthening its leadership in the domestic market of China, while managing aircraft assets steadily and continues to expand diversified financing channels at home and abroad, capitalizing on support from the major shareholder, China Everbright Limited, to pursue sustainable development of its businesses with an asset-light model. This rating is an endorsement of CALC’s track records by the market and the professional ratings agency, which will facilitate the Group’s efforts in broadening direct financing channels and strengthening its core competences, and taking its business development to the next level.”

 

The policy package unveiled by the Chinese Government has effectively promoted a stable development of the aviation industry. As the epidemic gradually comes under control, China's civil aviation market has been experiencing the strongest recovery momentum in the world. Riding on its strong presence in domestic market with a 79.8% of its self-owned aircraft fleet leased to Chinese carriers, a high fleet utilization rate of its aircraft asset, as well as a strong platform established in China’s aircraft leasing hub Tianjin Free Trade Zone, CALC is set to seize the opportunity of the strong recovery of the domestic civil aviation market in China to achieve ongoing business expansion and improvement of asset management capabilities. CAPA, a world-renowned aviation consulting organization, expects that the capacity of the domestic aviation market in China will return to the level seen a year ago by the end of this year. In the long run, the International Air Transport Association expects that China will become the world's largest single aviation market around 2025, underling China's civil aviation market’s huge potential and a promising development trend.