Qatar Airways’ Chief Akbar Al Baker has a warning for Airbus and Boeing: allow us to defer orders or we will never do business with you again.
Qatar Airways Has Many Aircraft On Orders
Despite a young fleet, COVID-19, and limited growth even prior to it due to the Gulf blockade, Qatar Airways has many aircraft on order.
- 777X – 60
- 787-9 – 23
- 777 freighter – 5
- A321neo – 50
- A350-100 -27
Qatar Airways sees value in its diverse fleet, but with depressed demand and also space constraints since it expects to park at least 20% of its fleet and predicts 2019 demand will not return until 2023-2024.
Qatar Airways Wants Airbus + Boeing To Allow Order Deferrals
With that in mind, outspoken Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker has a warning for Airbus and Boeing.
Speaking to Reuters, Al Baker said:
“We are negotiating with both Boeing and Airbus to fulfill our requirement to defer and we hope that both the manufacturers will oblige. They have no other alternative to oblige and if they make it difficult to oblige we will keep them in mind and we will not do business with them again.”
He made similar comments in a follow-up interview with Bloomberg:
“What is important is for Boeing and Airbus to show their customers that they are not only there with them in good times, but also in bad. If they don’t oblige, they will permanently lose us as a customer.”
I love how feisty Al Baker can be, but talk about a non-credible threat. Will Qatar Airways start buying Chinese or Russian-made aircraft if it no longer does business with Airbus and Boeing? Those two, for better or for worse, are the two games in town.
(H/T: Paddle Your Own Kanoo // image: Qatar Airways)