By Andy Sambidge
World's fastest growing airline reportedly in advanced talks on huge order from European company
Qatar Airways is in advanced negotiations to place a huge order for 60 planes built by the European firm Airbus, according to the Les Echos newspaper in France.
The paper said the order, which would be announced at the Le Bourget air show in June, would be for 50 A320 NEO aircraft, the re-engined version of the medium-range A320, and for 10 to 20 A380 superjumbo jets.
The airline would also place an additional 50 options to buy A320 NEO aircraft and options to buy an additional 10-20 A380 planes, the report added.
Last week, Qatar Airways, the Gulf state’s flag carrier, said it was in talks with Airbus with a view to buying more A380 superjumbos.
CEO Akbar Al Baker also said the carrier has received specific dates for the delivery of its much-delayed Boeing 787 order and is on track to receive the Dreamliner ahead of schedule.
“We have five A380s on order and of course we are in negotiation for purchasing additional A380s aircraft,” said Al Baker said at a press conference in Dubai.
“As far as the 787 is concerned… all the problems with this airplane have been resolved. We already have the delivery dates of my airplanes, we already have confirmed slots.”
Al Baker, who has been a vocal critic of the delay in delivery of the 787 Dreamliner aircraft, had previously threatened to shift his business to Airbus.