Qatar Airways is seeking compensation from Boeing after claiming the grounding of the 787 Dreamliner cost the airline $200 million in lost revenues and forced it to cut back on planned new routes.
Chief executive Akbar Al Baker revealed he was now in talks with Boeing's rival Airbus to buy between 10 and 15 of its A330 aircraft following the delays in getting its five Dreamliners back into service.
“We are talking to Airbus about A330s to fill in the gap that the Dreamliner delays have caused,” Al Baker told the Daily Telegraph. “It’s a new order.”
Qatar returned its Dreamliners to service last week after a three month grounding, with Al Baker saying he had “full confidence in the safety and security of this aircraft”.
But he added that delays over bringing the 787s back into service had forced the carrier to put five of 15 new routes it planned to launch this year on hold.
“This is our big issue with Boeing. We took airplanes, which we could not fly. I am very unhappy about this,” Al Baker reportedly said. “Since we have not been able to expand to our planned destinations, my bottom line has been impacted.”
Boeing is expected to offer the airline compensation, though it is unclear how much the US manufacturer will agree to pay.
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