Cebu Pacific becomes first Philippines airline to operate flight using SAF


Low cost Filipino airline, Cebu Pacific just operated a flight from Singapore to Manila on sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), becoming the first Philippine carrier to use SAF in its commercial operations.

The carrier’s maiden SAF flight was operated with an Airbus A321neo, using 35% blended SAF produced by Neste and supplied by Shell Eastern Petroleum.

Alex Reyes, chief strategy officer, Cebu Pacific said: “We encourage more producers to increase the supply of SAF in the region. Our first passenger flight using SAF is a culmination of months of cooperation with valued partners and is an important component of our sustainability program.”

A day before the flight, Cebu signed a strategic partnership with Shell Eastern Petroleum to make SAF more widely available. The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) explores the supply and purchase of SAF in Asia-Pacific and the Middle East, with an initial supply volume of at least 25kt (kiloton) per year.

Yeo Kia Thye, managing director, Airport Operations Planning and Airside, Changi Airport Group said: “We applaud Cebu Pacific for taking the first step on their SAF journey and are honoured that they have chosen to do so from Changi Airport. Changi Airport Group looks forward to supporting more airlines on their SAF journey, to power sustainable air travel together.”

Cebu used SAF for the first time in May on a delivery flight of a brand new A330neo from France to the Philippines. In line with its sustainability initiatives, blended SAF will be part of the standard procedures in all future Airbus NEO deliveries.

Jan Toschka, President of Shell Aviation said: “We are excited to work with Cebu Pacific in this five-year collaboration as we both believe that SAF is the best option available now for aviation to decarbonise by 2050. This agreement is testimony to the growing demand in the Asia Pacific region and we are ready to meet that need.”

Cebu will take delivery of another A330neo in November and a A320neo aircraft in December. It also aims to transition to an all-neo fleet by 2028 and incorporate the use of blended SAF across its commercial network by 2030.

Anand Stanley, president, Airbus Asia-Pacific said: “At Airbus we are fully committed to ensuring a sustainable future for our industry and we are pleased to partner with Cebu Pacific on this journey. Together we have a shared commitment to reach the industry goals of net zero by 2050 and the increased use of SAF will lead to a significant reduction in carbon emissions.”