Flag carrier Air Canada has amended its purchase agreement with aircraft manufacturers Boeing and Airbus as part of its fleet restructuring.

In line with this, the carrier has cancelled ten Boeing 737-8 and 12 Airbus A220 aircraft orders.

Air Canada has also deferred the delivery of new Boeing 737-8 and A220 aircraft scheduled for delivery in 2021 and 2022.

Air Canada president and chief executive officer Calin Rovinescu said: “We have taken several measures to carefully rationalise our existing fleet – we are accelerating the retirement of 79 mainline and Rouge aircraft.

“We are deferring delivery of new Boeing 737-8 and Airbus A220 aircraft scheduled for delivery in 2021 and 2022 and cancelling ten Boeing 737-8s and 12 Airbus A220s, representing about 40% of the remaining scheduled deliveries.

“Despite modifications made to our orders, these two aircraft remain the core of our narrow-body fleet and enable us to efficiently serve transcontinental domestic and transborder routes through improved economics and range while providing an excellent customer experience.”

In addition to the fleet reduction, Air Canada announced a workforce decrease of approximately 20,000 employees or more than 50% of its workforce through layoffs, terminations of employment, voluntary separations, early retirements, and special leaves.

The company reduced total projected capital expenditures by $3.0bn over the 2020 to 2023 period with this fleet restructuring and other capital reduction initiatives.

Last month, Air Canada completed an amended transaction relating to a planned merger with tour operator Transat.