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Airbus to give update on A380 shutdown plans: sources

Reuters  |  PARIS 

(Reuters) - is nearing a decision to axe production of the world's largest and may give an update with full-year earnings on Feb. 14, industry sources and analysts said.

The fate of the superjumbo has been in doubt since a vital order from foundered over inconclusive engine talks, forcing and the to weigh an alternative plan that would trigger a premature halt to production.

Under the proposed reshuffle, first reported by Reuters, hopes to a deal that would see switch part of its order to smaller models like the or A330, while eking out a few last-minute orders from

The timing of any final announcement may be driven by the outcome of those talks, but Airbus will be under pressure to provide some clarity on its plans in time for Thursday's earnings following mounting speculation over the plane's future.

"The A380 is the elephant in the hangar; it will be impossible to avoid saying something on the subject," said Sash Tusa, who predicted last week that a decision to shut the loss-making programme may be imminent.

The A380 is already on life support due to weak sales. Barring a surprise breakthrough in stalled engine talks between and Rolls-Royce, the A380's French and German factories are unlikely to survive beyond 2020, analysts say.

Any decision to pull the plug on the iconic European double-decker after just 12 years in service must be approved by board, which meets on Wednesday.

Airbus declined to comment ahead of Thursday's earnings.

(Reporting by Tim Hepher; editing by David Evans)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, February 12 2019. 23:12 IST
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