Airbus left hanging over new A380 orders
Alan Tovey A DESPERATELY needed order from Emirates for A380 “super jumbos” that would help keep alive the programme hangs on Airbus being able to secure orders for the giant airliner from other customers.
Gulf-based airline Emirates had been expected to announce it was ordering more than 30 of the aircraft in a $10bn (£7.6bn) deal on the first day of the Dubai Airshow on Sunday.
However, the order for the jets, whose production helps support thousands of jobs at Airbus’s UK plants, has so far failed to materialise.
The deal has been blocked by demands from Emirates – the biggest Tim Clark, the president of Emirates, says he is hopeful that Airbus will manage to meet his requirements customer for the twin-deck jet, with 100 of them in service and a further 42 on order – that the pan-European plane maker continues making the A380 for at least another decade.
Airbus has delivered 217 of the 317 A380s ordered so far, and is slashing the production rate from 27 a year to just eight by 2019. However, there are huge doubts whether airlines who have ordered A380s will actually buy them. If they fail to honour the agreements then Airbus could be forced to halt production of the A380 or try to persuade Emirates to accept the jets at a faster rate than it had planned. Emirates is currently set to receive the final A380 it has ordered in 2022.
Tim Clark, president of Emirates, said he was certain Airbus could agree to his requirements: “I am sure that if we get closer to a further order, the Airbus board will make that undertaking.”
State-owned EgyptAir yesterday signed an initial order for 12 Bombardier CSeries jets, marking the Canadian plane maker’s second deal for its largest planes this month, agreements that end an 18-month drought of no sales.