You are here: Home » International » News » Others
Business Standard

Fresh blow to Boeing: Airbus seals $35-billion aircraft order with China

The mammoth order comprises 290 A320-series narrow-body planes and 10 A350 wide-bodies, French President Emmanuel Macron's office said

Bloomberg  |  London 

In 2021, Airbus will stop building the A380, which never turned a profit. Airlines shunned the 555-seat double-decker, spooked by the need to fill so many seats and by the plane's pre-discount price tag: $445.6 million

secured a $35 billion jet deal from during a state visit by President to the French capital, dealing a fresh blow to Boeing as it grapples with the grounding of its best-selling jet.

The mammoth order comprises 290 A320-series narrow-body planes and 10 A350 wide-bodies, French President Emmanuel Macron’s office said at a briefing Tuesday. The latest has a list price of $110.6 million and the A350-900 sells for $317.4 million before discounts.

Boeing’s 737 Max narrow-body, the chief rival to the A320, has been idled following two crashes in five months. The US planemaker is also struggling with the fallout from a China-US trade war that’s seen sales to the Asian nation dry up.

A major deal for Toulouse, France-based was first touted by Macron in January 2018 during a trip to Beijing, when a figure of $18 billion was put on the transaction. A firm order failed to materialise despite a second French state visit in June and a delegation of top executives in September.

ALSO READ: After dumping the A380 superjumbo this year, Airbus bets on smaller jets

The deal announced in Paris will include both Neo — for new engine option — and so-called classic or CEO versions of the A319, A320 and A321, though the majority will be A320neos and A321neos, according to officials. typically orders planes in large batches and allocates them to airlines later.

The Asian power has become the most important market for Airbus and Boeing as its fast-growing middle class spurs demand for travel. While the US company’s order prospects have been complicated by the trade clash, Airbus has bolstered its position with an offer to expand a production line in Tianjin.

ALSO READ: Would you rather fly Boeing or Airbus on the longest flight in the world?

The deal will provide a boost for the European company’s incoming chief, Guillaume Faury, who takes over from Tom Enders in April. Airbus sales have had one of the slowest starts in the past decade, with the planemaker registering 103 cancellations and just four new orders in the first two months.

Airbus shares pared declines of as much as 1.7 percent earlier in the day to close 0.5 percent lower in Paris.

First Published: Tue, March 26 2019. 00:55 IST