Emirates airline’s order of 50 Airbus A350 aircraft worth $16 billion came as the first major deal, after a disappointing first day of Dubai Air Show 2019 failed to secure any big ticket orders despite the event being known for record-breaking agreements in the past. The only order seen on Sunday was for two 787-9 Dreamliners from Biman Bangladesh Airlines, reportedly worth around $585 million.
Major aerospace exhibitions, including the Middle East’s flagship airshow, usually see fierce competition for deals from rivals including Europe’s Airbus and US’ Boeing. However, the American plane maker is currently dealing with the consequences of two 737 MAX jet crashes which claimed lives of 346 people. The jets remain grounded worldwide waiting for regulatory approval for a software update. Some airlines cancelled their orders for Boeing aircraft, while many had to deal with massive damages due to the grounding.
Meanwhile, Airbus’ chief corporate officer Christian Scherer believes that his company does not benefit from its main competitor’s troubles.
“I really need to correct that cultural belief [that the 737 MAX’s grounding benefited Airbus],” he told CNBC. “This does not benefit anyone in this industry, the least of which would be Airbus.”