Airbus A380 orders hit headwind: EADS boss

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European aircraft maker Airbus must wait until late 2011 or 2012 before getting significant orders for its giant A380 airliner, the head of its parent company EADS said Tuesday in a German daily.

"Airlines must get through the crisis first. For that reason, I do not expect many orders in 2010," EADS chief executive Louis Gallois told the newspaper Bild.

"They will probably only become significant towards the end of 2011 or early 2012," the head of the European defence group said.

Gallois added however that he was "absolutely convinced" the A380 would eventually be successful.

In January, before the Icelandic volcano eruption grounded European air traffic for more than five days, Airbus had said it aimed to double the number of A380 deliveries this year to 20.

But the airline federation IATA has estimated since that the exceptional event will cost airlines more than one billion euros (1.3 billion dollars).

© 2010 AFP

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