The Denver Post - - BUSINESS -

WASH­ING­TON» The Air Force, which has been look­ing for ways to lower the cost of new Air Force One planes, agreed Fri­day to buy two jumbo jets from Boe­ing that were or­dered but never de­liv­ered to a now-de­funct Rus­sian air­line.

Two peo­ple close to the mat­ter con­firmed ear­lier this week that the Air Force and Boe­ing were in talks about the two planes that were still in the com­pany’s in­ven­tory. They spoke on con­di­tion of anonymity be­cause the deal hadn’t been pub­licly an­nounced.

The con­tract de­tails, in­clud­ing costs, were not pro­vided on Fri­day. But Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump has com­plained about the high cost of new pres­i­den­tial planes, even threat­en­ing at one point to can­cel the or­der.

“This award is a sig­nif­i­cant step to­wards en­sur­ing an over­all af­ford­able pro­gram,” said Dar­lene Costello, the Air Force’s prin­ci­pal deputy as­sis­tant sec­re­tary for ac­qui­si­tion.

The list price for a Boe­ing 747-8 is $386.8 mil­lion, ac­cord­ing to Boe­ing’s web­site. It was not clear whether that price would ap­ply to planes that are sit­ting in Boe­ing’s in­ven­tory. Mod­i­fi­ca­tions to ac­com­mo­date se­cu­rity, com­mu­ni­ca­tions and other pres­i­den­tial re­quire­ments would have to be done, and would in­crease the fi­nal price.

The air­craft are ex­pected to be in ser­vice in 2024.

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