Reports from the all-important Dubai airshow say Emirates wants a guarantee that Airbus will keep production of the A380 open for at least 10 years before the airline places any new orders for the superjumbo.
Speculation has been rife that Emirates was set to announce an order for up to 36 A380 jets at the Dubai Airshow securing jobs at the A380 wing assembly factory in Broughton.
Instead, the airline used the Dubai trade show as a platform to announce an order for 40 Boeing 787-10 Dreamliners from Airbus’ main rival in an order worth £11.5 billion.
Reports via news agency Reuters say negotiations continued overnight and that Airbus may be willing to meet Emirates demands in order to secure a much-needed order for its flagship jet.
“We continue to have a dialogue with them,” Emirates chief Tim Clark told Reuters. “If that comes to some kind of fruition during the course of the week or the next few months is very much down to them.”
Emirates already operates 100 A380s but there has been growing media speculation over the aircraft’s long-term future.
“I think the ownership (Dubai government) here are concerned about continuation (of the A380). They need some copper-bottom guarantees that if we do buy some more, then the line will be continued for a minimum period of years and that they are fully aware of the consequences of cancellation and leaving us high and dry.”
“Those assurances I am sure will come. Quite when, I don’t quite know.”
“There has to be a fleshing out of the undertakings. My own view is that Airbus are ready to make those, but whether it is today or tomorrow or next week or in the next few months, I don’t know. They (Airbus leaders) are all here,” Clark said.