Air France mega-order split between Airbus, Boeing: source

9th June 2011, Comments 0 comments

Air France-KLM will split a key order for 100 long-haul carriers between Europe's Airbus and US rival Boeing, a source close to the deal said Thursday.

"The final result will undoubtedly be a balanced result between the two constructors," the source told AFP.

The Franco-Dutch airline is planning to purchase a hundred carriers to replace aging Airbus A340s and McDonnell Douglas MD-11s, constituting a major prize for the chosen supplier, or suppliers.

The bill will be in the tens of billions of dollars when the details of the order are announced, something which is expected to happen next month.

French parliamentary deputy Bernard Carayon has launched a petition calling on Air France to choose the twin-jet A350, designed as Airbus' answer to the much delayed Boeing 787 Dreamliner, for its mega-deal.

By Thursday a hundred deputies from across the political spectrum had signed the petition, almost a fifth of the chamber.

Junior transport minister Thierry Mariani promised that "French industry would be taken into account," in the awarding of the contract.

The French state holds a 15.7 percent stake in Air France-KLM.

Among its current fleet, Air France-KLM has 73 Boeing planes against 35 Airbus carriers.

© 2011 AFP

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