KATHMANDU: Airbus 498 aircraft in 2009. That is a new company delivery record for a single year and 15 more aircraft than in 2008. The figure includes 402 A320 Family aircraft, 86 A330/A340s which are both records for a single year, and 10 A380s. Airbus Military, the military aircraft division of Airbus, delivered 16 light and medium transport aircraft.

Despite tough times, Airbus reached its order intake target. It won 310 orders gross (271 net) valued at $34.9 billion gross ($30.3 billion net) at list prices, or 54 per cent of the world market share of aircraft beyond 100 seats.

New orders include 228 A320 Family aircraft, 78 A330/A340/A350 XWB Family aircraft, and four orders for A380. Airbus surpassed the 500th order milestone for the next generation A350 XWB. At 2009-end, it had an order backlog of 3,488 aircraft, valued at $437.1 billion.

Further streamlining saw the formation of Airbus Military and full integration of military aircraft programmes within Airbus. The maiden flight of the A400M (MSN 1) in December was a proof-point of the successful re-organisation and new programme set-up.

Conversion work for the first A330-based Multi-Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) aircraft, for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) was completed, and is on track for delivery in mid-2010. The MRTT received a further incremental order for three aircraft, raising the total to 28. On the smaller transport aircraft front, there were 19 orders from seven customers. Airbus’ turn-around programme, Power 8 again exceeded targets, delivering new cost savings of around 2.0 billion Euros gross on a recurring basis. Power 8+ aims to add a further 650 million Euros in savings for Airbus by 2012.

“Considering the economic and financial environment we have done rather well in 2009. Great teamwork and flexibility at Airbus and a close cooperation with customers, suppliers and finance institutions were key to success. We plan to keep production at 2008-2009 levels,” said Tom Enders, Airbus President and CEO.