Deutsche Lufthansa is buying ten new Airbus planes worth as much as $1.3 billion to replace older aircraft and add more seats on long-haul routes.
Europe's second-biggest airline placed an order for A330-300 models for delivery in 2004 and 2005, said Christine Ritz, a Lufthansa spokeswoman. The planes have a list price of about $128 million each. Ritz refused to disclose the contract price.
Airbus and Boeing have been slashing prices to win orders amid an industry slump. The September 11th attacks led to a drop in air travel, curbing demand for new aircraft. Airbus has cut production this year by 8 percent to 300 units, while Boeing will be down 28 percent from last year to 380 planes.
“Lufthansa is taking advantage of some of the significant discounts available in the market right now,” said Jonathan Wober, an analyst at Deutsche Bank “It's assuming expected recovery in demand for air travel by 2004.”
Europe which is panic-stricken over the consequences of rising energy and food prices could strike a treacherous blow to Ukraine this winter, writes Simon Tisdall for The Guardian.