Airline CEO mocks Airbus, then signs for A320neo

Qatar Airways chief executive makes up with Airbus to sign huge order

In a bizarre about-turn, Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker says that an expected deal with Airbus will now go ahead as planned, despite bitter criticism of the manufacturer just hours earlier. The airline has signed a $6.4 billion order, selecting the A320neo as the reference aircraft for expanding its short- to medium-haul fleet, while simultaneously increasing its order for the A380. The agreement is a firm contract for 50 A320neo aircraft and five additional A380s. “The A320neo promises to be a great aircraft, which is why we have chosen it to form the backbone of our future single aisle expansion,” the Qatar Airways chief commented on the signing. Just hours earlier, however, he had publicly lambasted the aircraft maker when talks stalled, saying that Airbus was “still learning to build aircraft.”
He later explained: “Every day, sometimes you get stuck somewhere in the middle, especially when the lawyers throw the spanner into the wheel. The impasse was on an issue of the aircraft, and this is why I mentioned that Airbus is forgetting how to make airplanes.”
[pictured: Akbar Al Baker, Qatar Airways’ CEO, and John Leahy, Airbus Chief Operating Officer, Customers; photo courtesy Airbus]


Check Also

Qatar Airways, Doha, Oslo, increase, flights, week, capacity, Qatar, connect, airports, Middle East

Qatar Airways start flights to Gothenburg Landvetter airport

The ever-growing airline from Qatar starts wide-body Boeing 787-8 operations to Gothenburg in December 2018.

IATA, Al Baker, Qatar Airways, CEO, management, gender equality, airlines, board, man, women

Qatar CEO: Only a man can run an airline

The new chairman of the International Air Transport Association embarrasses his colleagues.

Qantas, Perth, London, Heathrow, direct, non-stop, first, route, flight, Australia, UK, Dreamliner, Joyce, strategy, long-haul

First direct route between Australia and UK

Qantas flies non-stop between Perth and London Heathrow – but is it the world’s longest?

Doha, Qatar Airways, travel, flights, Latin, America, South America, Central America, oneworld, Iberia, Madrid, connect, ticket, Middle East

Qatar Airways deepens oneworld relationship

The national carrier of Qatar reaches further into Central and South America.

Qatar Airways, Qatar, Al Baker, CEO, ITB, press conference, sanctions, loss, blockade, destinations, routes, new, Tallinn, London Gatwick, Mediterranean, Turkey, Saudi, Greece

Qatar CEO warns of loss, reveals 16 new routes

Qatar Airways’ chief steals the limelight at ITB, blasts sanctions and announces a big new expansion.

Air Italy, Italy, flights, plans, Meridiana, Qatar Airways, rebrand, India, A350-1000, Alitalia

Qatar backs Italy’s “new national carrier”

Air Italy will take on Alitalia. Qatar Airways also takes the world’s first A350-1000 and reiterates India plans.