LE BOURGET, France—Orders for more than 200 aircraft with a total value exceeding $20 billion were announced on the opening day of the Paris Air Show as airlines sought planes with improved fuel efficiency.

People in the industry said Airbus and Boeing Co. could garner twice as many orders and commitments than were unveiled at the Farnborough Air Show in England last year.

Airbus led the charge Monday, sealing several deals for the updated version of its best-selling A320. Total orders for the plane were expected to surpass 600 by the show’s end Sunday.

The opening day also included two mystery deals for the Boeing 747-8 and one for the Bombardier Inc. CSeries. It is unusual for buyers not to be disclosed at the event, the industry’s premier trade show.

Leasing companies dominated Farnborough last year, and the largest order Monday came from the GE Capital Aviation Services leasing unit, known as Gecas, of General Electric Co. The aircraft lessor committed to acquire 60 A320neo models—neo stands for “new engine option”—valued at $5.47 billion at list prices. Buyers typically negotiate big discounts on large orders.

“The A320neo family will bring fuel savings to customers, while offering the same levels of in-service reliability they expect,” Gecas President and Chief Executive Norman Liu said. “We have a solid track record of placing A320s with customers around the globe.”

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