IN BRIEF | Emirates will reconsider the Airbus A350 for its future fleet plans but will stack the airplane against the Boeing 787 Dreamliner in a head-to-head contest for a massive order from the Gulf carrier.
Earlier this month Emirates cancelled its order for 70 of the Airbus A350s but airline President Tim Clark has revealed that Airbus could find its way back to the table.
However, Boeing is also in with a square chance for its Dreamliner, and the canny Clark will no doubt play each aircraft manufacturer off one another to drive down the price.
"At the end of this year, beginning of next year, we will re-engage with Airbus on this aeroplane [the A350]" Clark tells The Financial Times, adding "We will also engage [with Boeing about the Dreamliner].”
Emirates is the world's largest customer for both the Airbus A380 and the Boeing 777, and Clark says these will remain the flagships of Emirates' long-range international fleet.
The A350 or Boeing 787 would slot into medium-range regional routes on Emirates' network map, with the airline looking to ink an order for between 50 and 70 of either jet in a deal worth at least A$20 billion at list price.
Gulf competitors Qatar and Etihad have already signed up for the Boeing 787, with Qatar also the launch customer for the A350's commercial debut at the end of this year.
Read more: Emirates to reconsider Airbus A350 order
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About David Flynn
David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.