One of the largest airlines in the Middle East, Qatar Airways made discouraging statements regarding the renewal and expansion of its fleet this week.
An Airbus and Boeing customer, Qatar has confirmed that it will postpone delivery of all new planes ordered from the two planemakers until at least 2022. “We have already notified both Boeing and Airbus that we will not be taking any airplanes this year or next year,” said Akbar al-Baker, company CEO in an interview on Sky News.
The executive went further and revealed that other planes that were due to be delivered in the next two or three years “will now be pushed back to as long as nearly eight to 10 years.”
On ordering 30 737 MAX jets, al-Baker acknowledged that Boeing has already been warned that the aircraft are no longer needed and should be replaced by other models.
Participation in other airlines
Qatar Airways currently has massive firm orders for aircraft from Airbus and Boeing. With the European manufacturer, there are 50 units of the A321neo and 27 of the A350-100 pending delivery.
The US airframer has yet to deliver 23 units of the 787-9 out of a total order for 30 aircraft. Qatar also has an order for 60 777X jets, including the 777-8 variant, which was announced in 2014, in addition to some 777F cargo to be delivered.
Despite the crisis, Qatar said it remains determined to maintain stakes in other companies, such as the IAG group, which controls British Airways and Iberia, and LATAM, which owns 10% of the shares.