Cargolux 747-8 order back on track after GEnx engine problems “resolved”

Victoria
By Victoria October 3, 2011 07:15

Cargolux 747-8 order back on track after GEnx engine problems “resolved”

Boeing’s 747-8 will enter service by the middle of this month after an October 12 delivery date was agreed by Cargolux. Last month the delivery was cancelled at the eleventh hour after a fuel-burn dispute with engine supplier General Electric. Cargolux rejected delivery of the first two 747-8 freighters because following a September 16 board meeting where Qatar Airways’ CEO, Akbar Al Barker – the new 35% shareholder – took his seat for the first time. During that meeting Al Barker took exception at the 2.7% shortfall in fuel-efficiency guarantees on the 747-8 and refused to accept the status quo on the order, demanding a delay for further negotiation. “Unfortunately, the management of Cargolux did not take the action they should have taken during the process of the aircraft acceptance,” Al-Baker said yesterday as he prepared to pick up a 777 at Boeing’s plant in Everett , Washington . “As we sit on the board of Cargolux, we have full right to object if we find something is not fair as far as Cargolux is concerned.” The GEnx engine was underperforming, “and this issue was very strongly raised and was appreciated by the board,” he said. The problem has been resolved with GE, and the delivery will now take place around October 12, pending another board meeting on October 7, Al-Baker said. Luxembourg-based Cargolux confirmed the “tentative agreement” in a statement today. Al-Baker declined to comment on compensation or say how the issue was resolved however it is certain that price reductions and/or incentives would have been given seen as GE Aviation reiterated in August that it was developing a performance improvement package (PIP) for the GEnx-2B engine used on the 747-8, which should be ready in mid to late 2013. It is likely that the PIP will be installed on the Cargolux aircraft at no charge as soon as it is ready but this action will take the aircraft out of service and therefore that too would have been taken into account by Cargolux when searching for a compromise.

It is now clear that whatever GE and Boeing have agreed with Cargolux will set a precedent for Atlas Worldwide Holdings who have yet to put their agreement for 12 747-8s back on track. Aircraft scheduled for delivery post GE PIP in 2013 should be unaffected.

Victoria
By Victoria October 3, 2011 07:15
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