Airbus reorganises A350 project: sources

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European aircraft maker Airbus will reorganise its key A350 long-haul twin-jet programme to ensure that deliveries can begin before the end of 2013 despite pressures on the timetable, company sources said Tuesday.

The sources, who asked not to be named, said management had told a meeting that the A350 production timetable would be simplified beginning January 2011.

Didier Evrard, the head of the A350 project, designed as Airbus' answer to the much delayed Boeing 787 Dreamliner, will as a result have much more direct control over the resources needed to deliver the plane on time.

Airbus recently said the A350 had been pushed back to the second half of 2013 from the earlier entry date of mid-2013.

The company sources said the changes being made could also allow Airbus to free up resources to launch a new version of its A320 medium-haul workhorse, equipping the aircraft with new engine systems.

A formal decision on the A320 option is expected by the end of this year.

© 2010 AFP

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