Airbus first-half deliveries slides to 16-year low despite June uptick

- A Monitor Desk Report 13 Jul, 2020 | 367 Views|-+
Dhaka: Airbus deliveries rose 50 per cent in June compared to May, the highest amount since the coronavirus pandemic spread across Europe in March. However, the accelerating recovery could not prevent first-half deliveries from dropping to a 16-year low.

Figures released by the European planemaker late on July 8 underscored a collapse in aerospace industry fortunes since early this year, hours after Airbus workers facing job cuts staged their first strike in 12 years.

Deliveries rose to 36 aircraft in June from 24 in May and a low of 14 in April. For the first half, deliveries fell by 49 per cent to 196 planes compared with 389 in the same period last year.

Airbus has said it faces an average 40 per cent drop in business over the next two years, forcing it to cut 15,000 jobs, or 11 per cent, of its workforce. Unions oppose compulsory cuts.

Facing a slump in demand, planemakers have been urging airlines to take planes that have already been built in return for agreement to defer others due at later dates.

Some aircraft, however, are going straight into storage because travel demand is recovering slowly, according to reports.

June's figures suggested negotiations were partially paying off as Airbus handed over three wide-body A350-900 aircraft for European airlines despite a glut of large jets.

But deliveries of many other wide-body aircraft at Airbus and US rival Boeing remain hampered by weak demand for long-haul travel as a result of the crisis.

Reports said last month that Airbus had sent out dozens of default notices to airlines in a bid to keep deliveries moving.

With airlines focusing on survival, Airbus posted no orders for a second month.

Gross orders so far this year remained at 365 jets, but net orders adjusted for cancellations slipped by one unit to 298, after lessor Avolon cancelled one of 10 A330neos it has ordered.

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