Airbus says it heads for record year with 1,378 orders

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European aerospace giant Airbus said on Tuesday it had booked 1,378 orders this year by the end of November, confirming it was headed for a record year despite the cancellation of some orders for its A380 superjumbo airliners.

The company said it suffered a total of 143 cancelled orders between January 1 and the end of November, including the cancellation of 10 out of 19 orders for the A380.

The cancellations were made by US aircraft lessor ILFC, but an Airbus spokesman told AFP they this was not significant and that Airbus planned to speed up production of the A380.

"These cancellations are not significant because we cannot look at only one year. We must analyse orders over several years," the spokesman said.

"We are at 243 orders for superjumbos for 18 clients, which corresponds to about six years of production," he said.

At the end of November, Airbus was well ahead of US rival Boeing, which had taken a total of 518 orders so far in 2011.

Orders for Airbus's A320 family of planes accounted for 1,307 of the total orders so far this year.

© 2011 AFP

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