NEW DELHI, June 6 - European budget carrier Wizz Air is in the process of selecting an engine manufacturer for 177 of the narrowbody Airbus jets it has on order, the airline's CEO told Reuters on Thursday.

The company, which operates an all-Airbus fleet, has two options - its current supplier Pratt & Whitney, whose engines are facing issues worldwide forcing airlines to ground planes, and competitor CFM, a joint venture between General Electric (GE) and France's Safran.

"We are right now in the process of tendering it (the engine order)," CEO Jozsef Varadi said during an interview on the sidelines of the CAPA India aviation summit in New Delhi.

Choosing the next engine provider will depend on the acquisition cost, durability of the engine, operating cost and how the airline can financially get the cost guaranteed for aftermarket activities, Varadi said.

Wizz Air is among airlines that have been forced to ground a large number of planes due to a powder metal issue with the Pratt & Whitney's geared turbofan (GTF) engine.

As of May 17, about 47 of Wizz Air's fleet of more than 200 Airbus jets are on the ground, and Varadi said he expects 30 more groundings by summer next year.

Wizz Air has 330 aircraft on order, about half of which are confirmed to have the GTF engines from Pratt & Whitney. The tender is for the remaining 177 planes, Varadi said.

Varadi said he expects all ordered planes to be delivered by the end of the decade, by which point the airline will have a fleet of around 500 jets.

For growth beyond the decade it will have to order more planes and Varadi said he would need to start thinking about that soon.

While he did not give details on the number of planes Wizz Air will need beyond the decade, he said the airline would need 70 to 100 aircraft per year to replace old jets and continue growing its fleet. (Reporting by Shivansh Tiwary and Aditi Shah in New Delhi; Editing by Jan Harvey)