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Leahy ‘disappointed’ at Qantas A380 deferral

written by australianaviation.com.au | May 25, 2012

Qantas has deferred delivery of its remaining A380s on order. (Gordon Reid)

Airbus chief operating officer – customers John Leahy has expressed disappointment at Qantas’s recent decision to defer delivery of two more Airbus A380s.

”I wasn’t surprised, I think disappointed is more the word I would use,” Leahy said when asked of Qantas’s decision to defer delivery of two A380s due to be handed over to the airline next year. Nonetheless he remains confident Qantas will still take of all eight deferred A380s it has on order.

“I am sure they will take delivery of them,” Leahy said, speaking at the side of Airbus’s ‘Innovation Days’ media briefings in Toulouse on Wednesday. “I think we can show very easily in black and white that [taking delivery of the A380s] would lower their seat mile costs versus keeping the old kid [the 747] alive, and it would increase their market position if they would take them.”

On May 4 Qantas announced a range of cutbacks with the aim of reducing the airline’s capital expenditure to maintain its investment grade rating that will see the two A380s that were scheduled to arrive next year pushed back to 2016-17. Qantas is then slated to receive another six A380s from 2018-19. Twelve A380s are currently in service.

“I think the argument that ‘oh yes, all that is true, but we have a limit on your capital budget’, I think that’s a tough argument,” Leahy remarked.

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