[photopress:air_Airbus_A380_on_tour_W44511.jpg,full,alignright]Air China said it has no plans to order the double-decker Airbus A380 jumbo jet because its fleet uses the rival Boeing 747.
Airbus executives said earlier this week that Air China was among the customers they were pursuing for the A380. But Air China Chairman Li Jixiang said Thursday that it makes more sense for the company to use just one kind of jumbo jet.
Li Jixiang said, ‘Usually it would be better for a carrier to stick to one type of big aircraft in its fleet and better to form a certain scale. Otherwise the costs would rise.’
Air China expects at least a 15% rise in passenger numbers in 2008, up from the expected 35 million to 38 million this year but, Li Jiziang said, the company’s international routes are expected to become profitable by full-year 2008.
Airbus delivered its first A380s this week to Singapore Airlines almost two years behind schedule. Airbus Chief Operating Officer John Leahy said Airbus was trying to sell its biggest jet model to Air China. Delays to a new Boeing jet, the 787, will affect just one of the 15 models Air China has ordered and Air China is seeking compensation for the delay, he added.
On the other hand China Southern Airlines, the country’s largest carrier by fleet size, has signed an agreement to buy 10 A330-200 aircraft from Airbus. And got a discount on the quoted price of $167.7 million each.