upbeat on Latam sales; no talks on A380 in region
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[March 25, 2014]
By Felipe Iturrieta
SANTIAGO (Reuters) — Airbus <AIR.PA>
believes it can eventually drive its Latin American market share up
to 65 percent, although it is not in talks to sell its A380
superjumbo in the region, the company's Latin American president
told Reuters on Monday.
Airbus, the world's second-biggest planemaker, has outsold rival
Boeing <BA.N> in the region in recent years and its market share was
now 61 percent of aircraft sold, or 51 percent of planes flying,
Rafael Alonso said in a interview ahead of Santiago's FIDAE airshow.
"We're thinking that we are going to carry on increasing that
presence," he said. "We could reach 65 percent."
Alonso was upbeat on 2014 plane sales, saying that they could reach
triple digits in what he said was "a very cyclical market." Airbus
sold 56 planes in Latin America in 2013, and 100 in 2012 and 2011.
But the company is not currently in talks to sell its superjumbo
A380 in the region, said Alonso. The world's largest passenger jet,
which has had patchy sales since entering into service in 2007, was
a centerpiece of the exhibits at FIDAE, a large Latin
American-focused air show that takes place every two years.
"At the moment we're not in talks, but we think it's a plane that
has space in the region. Certain routes merit it...perhaps in four
or five years there will be companies looking at it," he said.
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The region is a key battleground as planemakers expect strong growth
over the next two decades, second only to the Middle East. Airbus
projects passenger traffic in the region could expand around 7
percent in 2014.
That translates into a need for a likely 2,300 planes over the next
20 years, Alonso said at a news conference earlier on Monday.
(Reporting by Felipe Iturrieta; writing by Rosalba O'Brien;
by Andre Grenon and Lisa Shumaker)
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