Spanish airline Iberia is to order up to 79 planes from European manufacturer Airbus.It is a setback for US rival Boeing, who fought hard for the order. Iberia has signed a deal for 30 of the aircraft worth 3.4 billion euros with an option on the remaining 49. The new planes will renew Iberia’s short and medium-haul fleet and should help it to compete more effectively with Europe’s low cost airlines. The firm orders are for 15 Airbus A318s, nine A320s and six A321s. They are due to be delivered between 2006 and 2011. The agreement was announced a day after one of Europe’s top discount airlines, Ryanair, ordered just over 3 billion euros worth of planes from Boeing. Iberia’s full-year profits are due out on Monday.