European aircraft manufacturer Airbus will begin work on the proposed A350 -- a direct rival to Boeing's 787 Dreamliner -- after shareholders agreed for work to begin building the new mid-size, long-haul jet.
Once is service, the A350 will take on Boeing's 787 Dreamliner
Shareholders in European aircraft manufacturer Airbus approved the launch of the A350, a mid-size, long-haul carrier that will compete with Boeing's planned 787 Dreamliner, Airbus parent company EADS announced Thursday.
EADS, the European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company which met during the morning in Amsterdam, holds 80 percent of Airbus and BAE Systems of Britain 20 percent.
The Dreamliner will have been operational for two years before the A350 takes to the skies.
The shareholders announced after the meeting that deliveries for the new Airbus are being penciled in for 2010, two years behind that of the Boeing plane.
A350 due i n the skies two years after 787
"With the official industrial launch of the A350, Airbus will now be able to book firm orders and expects around 200 of these by the end of the year," EADS said.
At the same time, jet manufacturer Rolls-Royce Group PLC said it had reached a deal with Airbus to supply engines for the A350. Its new Trent 1700 engine will be available for deliveries from mid-2011, the company said in a statement.
The industrial launch of the A350 program had initially been planned for earlier this year. Airbus said in June that a trans-Atlantic trade dispute over aircraft subsidies was responsible for the delay.
Latest bout i n EU-US trade dispute
The US and EU continue to tangle over aircraft subsidies.
European Union and US negotiators are trying to negotiate a settlement to the dispute, which began last year when Washington declared a 1992 pact on aircraft subsidies to be void and filed a World Trade Organization complaint against EU government aid to Airbus.
The EU retaliated in a countersuit citing tax breaks and research and development subsidies to Chicago-based Boeing and its suppliers, including Japanese companies working on the Dreamliner program
EADS announced on Thursday that Airbus would next year forgo reimbursable government assistance to develop the A350 to avoid aggravating the dispute.