Airbus soars above Boeing in airliner deliveries

6th January 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Jan 6 (AFP) - The European aircraft consortium Airbus is flying ahead of its US rival Boeing for the second year running in terms of deliveries in a rising market.

PARIS, Jan 6 (AFP) - The European aircraft consortium Airbus is flying ahead of its US rival Boeing for the second year running in terms of deliveries in a rising market.

Competition between the two giant manufacturers is increasing in the segment for medium-sized aircraft.

Boeing said on Wednesday that it had delivered 285 commercial airliners as planned in 2004, trailing Airbus which expects to report 315 deliveries.

Airbus is to publish its performance figures at a press conference in Paris on January 12 but its parent company, the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company has already signalled that the final figure will be 315-320.

Up to November 30, Airbus had delivered 290 aircraft and Boeing 261.

In 2003 it had moved ahead of Boeing for the first time, delivering 305 airliners compared with 281 for Boeing.

In terms of orders, Airbus is likely to emerge in the lead having booked many orders from Asia towards the end of the year, although neither company has yet issued data for the year.

However, Boeing has pulled ahead in the prized market for medium-sized airliners with its 7E7 model competing with the Airbus A350.

The Boeing 7E7, expected to enter service in 2008, has attracted 126 orders, of which 56 are firm, although this is far short of the target of 200 firm orders in 2004.

The A350 by contrast, expected to fly in 2010, has attracted only 10 orders although Airbus is hopeful of announcing 50 orders by the middle of this year.

Forecasts by both airlines point to recovery of the market for airliners after three years of crisis marked by political and military upheavals and by the SARS and poultry flu scares in Asia.

International airline traffic is expected to show an increase of 11.0 percent in 2004 and of 6.0 percent per year on average from 2004 to 2008, according to estimates by the International Air Transport Association.

The latest forecasts by Airbus point to a strong recovery in the longer term, during the next 20 years.

The company estimates that the market will absorb 17,328 new passenger and freight aircraft by 2023, equivalent to 866 aircraft per year from 600 in 2004.

Boeing sees an even bigger picture, estimating that there will be demand for 20,000 aircraft in the same period.

In 2005 the comparative performance of the two manufacturers is likely to remain broadly similar. Airbus is targeting 350-360 deliveries and Boeing 320.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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