Sat, Apr 18, 2009
Gulf Air Exercises Eight Options
Finally... some good news for
American planemaker Boeing. After watching 2009 get off to an
inauspicious start, thanks to 32 cancellations against its troubled
787 Dreamliner program, this week Boeing saw its order book swing
into positive territory for the first time in 2009.
The Seattle Times reports Bahrain-based Gulf Air exercised eight
options for the midsized 787-8 variant of the composite-bodied
airliner, due to make its first flight later this quarter.
As ANN reported, Gulf Air placed its original
order for 16 787s in January 2008.
As of April 16, Boeing's order net book stands at a whopping +4
airplanes for the year... but it could be worse.
After hitting a low of -13 orders in early February -- thanks to
those aforementioned 787 cancellations, courtesy of Russia's S7
Airlines and Dubai-based leasing startup LCAL -- Boeing's order
book has gradually crept towards positive territory, fueled largely
by orders for its still-popular 737 narrowbody and mammoth 777.
It's unclear how long Boeing will be able to point to a positive
order book, however, as many expect the slumping economy will take
its toll on aircraft deliveries for some time to come.
Last week, Boeing said it would curb production of all widebody
aircraft types in 2010, thanks to order deferrals and
cancellations; many analysts also expect
similar news for the 737 line at some point
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