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Looking to the skies
Nothing big is expected from the Paris Air Show this year, as the global airline industry is going through a turbulent phase because of the financial crisis.
June 15, 2009 11:27 by Aarti Nagraj
Many of those orders are from Middle Eastern carriers; during the Farnborough air show in the UK last year, Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways, the single highest buyer at the event, placed 55 firm orders with Airbus worth $12 billion, including 10 A380s and 25 A350s. Boeing received orders for 45 aircraft from Etihad worth $9.4 billion, including 35 787 Dreamliners and 10 Boeing 777-30. While Dubai Aerospace Enterprise placed an order for 100 Airbus planes worth $12.6 billion, flydubai, Emirates’ low cost carrier is buying 50 Boeing 737-800s worth around $3.7 billion at list prices. Saudi Arabian Airlines and Qatar Airways also placed big orders at Farnborough.
The plane makers will be hoping that the Middle Eastern carriers will boost some business at the air show this year as well.
They could see some orders; a report by Bloomberg quotes sources as saying that Etihad Airways will be announcing engine orders valued at about $6.7 billion at the Paris Air Show. The engines are for 100 Airbus SAS and Boeing aircraft announced at the Farnborough Air Show last year, says the report. Qatar Airways has also promised to announce “significant orders” at the air show.
However, Middle Eastern airlines are not immune to the crisis, and according to the IATA, carriers in the region are expected to post a loss of $1.5 billion this year.
“There is no modern precedent for today’s economic meltdown. The ground has shifted. Our industry has been shaken. This is the most difficult situation that the industry has faced,” said Giovanni Bisignani, IATA’s director-general and CEO.
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