Fuel economy continues to be a big driver of plane sales and at the Dubai Airshow green is the word.
While it develops its rival to Boeing’s lightweight 787, Airbus is focused on neos — that is new engine options — for planes like the revamped version of its best-selling narrowbody A 320.
Kuwaiti leasing company Alafco has just expanded its order from 30 to 50 of those passenger jets.
François Chignac, our reporter at Dubai, spoke to Airbus boss Tom Enders about the boost to the provisional order from the Paris air show.
Tom Enders, President and CEO Airbus : “Well it means an incremental order to the A 320neo. We have already an incredible 1,200 orders this year. So we having a great run with NEO. But, not surprisingly, John (Leahy, head of Airbus sales) was just explaining this is a 15 percent fuel burn reduction — that’s 30 percent roughly over the real old models — and with the fuel prices up over 100 dollars a barrel, that’s a no brainer for our customers.”
euronews: “How important is the Dubai Airshow to you?”
Tom Enders : “It’s become one of the most important air shows in the world, certainly the most important in the region, the Middle East is a fast growing region. Air traffic is growing above average very clearly and we expect that the Middle East and Asia will remain, for future, for the next 10, 20 years the two fastest growing air traffic regions on this planet.”
euronews: What impact is the current crisis in Europe having on Airbus?
Tom Enders : “I mean, it’s quite interesting in the first of the year, the Europeans looked at the Arab revolutions and how that could impact business. Now the Arab colleagues are looking on Europe and are asking themselves how that could impact European and the world economy. Overall the situation here is still very, very good.”
Correspondent Chignac François concluded: “Airbus created the A 320neo to cut fuel consumption and reduce pollution. The number of new orders for the plane at the Dubai Airshow seems to show they are on the right green path.