Airbus backs off tendering for RAM

RABAT — Airbus yesterday said it would not take part in tendering for the supply to Morrocan airline Royal Air Maroc (RAM) of four long-haul aircraft, leaving the potential $790 million deal to Boeing.

By (Reuters)

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Published: Sat 6 Aug 2005, 10:21 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 4:12 PM

The European planemaker said it had "regretfully" decided not to put in an offer by a July deadline because the airline's needs were not clear.

"We are ready and willing to continue consultations and to discuss all proposals by RAM," an Airbus spokeswoman said in France, where the company is based.

Airbus had initially offered its future A350 mid-sized carrier against Boeing's 787 Dreamliner in the tender to replace RAM's 757 and 767 Boeing aircraft, Airbus officials said.

The purchase is part of a programme launched in 2000 for the purchase of 22 to 24 aircraft to renovate RAM's fleet of 32.

The A350 and 787 are at the heart of a transatlantic fight between Boeing and Airbus for control of the novel mid-sized, long-range segment of the jet market.

After redesigning its original concept for the A350 to include more seats, Airbus has been waging a counter-offensive against the 787 since the Paris Air Show in June, with the two rivals battling for every last plane order.

"It's with regret that we withdraw our bid for this RAM deal," David Dufrenois, Airbus sales manager for Morocco, was quoted by the semi-official Le Matin newspaper as saying.

"The terms of this tender are not clear and bid deadlines are too short," he added. Dufrenois spoke during a private lunch with a handful of journalists from local newspapers in Casablanca on Thursday.

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