RPT-AIRSHOW-UPDATE 2-Airbus eyes military,civilian deals in Asia

* Announces sale of 6 A330-200s to Hong Kong Airlines

* Indonesia a potential market for A400M

* To raise Asia outsource spending, seeks partner in
Vietnam (Repeats to additional subscribers with no change to

By Harry Suhartono and Mariko Katsumura

SINGAPORE, Feb 4 (BestGrowthStock) – European aerospace giant
Airbus has agreed to sell six planes worth $1.15 billion to
Hong Kong Airlines and said it was looking to secure more deals
in Asia, including for the troubled A400M military transporter.

Indonesia, which has plans to renew its C-130 transport
airplane fleet, is a potential market for the A400M, said
Christian Duhain, a vice-president at Airbus parent EADS
(EAD.PA: ), said on Thursday. [ID:nSGE613030]

John Leahy, Chief Operating Officer for Airbus, told
Reuters on the sidelines of the Singapore Airshow that in terms
of civilian deals, the company should finalise sales of
wide-body A330 passenger jets to Asian customers in the next
two weeks. [ID:nSGE61305H]

“We are working on a couple of deals right now, but again
we are not going to rush to sign it just because of the
airshow,” Leahy said.

“I have deals in this region for some A330s that we are
close to wrapping up… we may have to wait until next week or
maybe the week after,” he added without giving further details.

Airbus subsequently said it has a memorandum of
understanding to sell six A330-200 aircraft to Hong Kong
Airlines worth $1.15 billion [ID:nSGC003472].

The global economic recession resulted in a 3.5 percent
decline in global air travel last year and a 10.1 percent drop
in the volume of airborne cargo, according to the International
Air Transport Association (IATA). [ID:nLDE60Q0TF]

Although some industry analysts and executives say that a
recovery has started, others expect it will take years before
airlines start to buy aircraft in large numbers.

“I think the industry will stay soft or pretty much in
recession in terms of order intakes through 2012,” Leahy said.


Indonesia is looking to renew two squadrons, or 32 planes,
of its Lockheed Martin (LMT.N: ) C-130 military transport planes,
the government said last year.

This could be an opportunity for Airbus to sell the
Southeast Asian nation the A400M, which can carry twice as much
payload, twice the distance compared to the C-130s.

But the plane has run into funding difficulties. Later on
Thursday, EADS and the main buyers of the A400M — Britain,
France, Germany, Spain, Belgium, Luxembourg and Turkey — will
meet in Berlin to resolve a 2.4 billion euro ($3.4 billion)
funding shortfall to complete development of the plane.

In Asia, Malaysia has agreed to purchase four A400M planes,
with delivery scheduled for 2013.

The Indonesian deal is far from certain as competition will
be tough and the country, Southeast Asia’s biggest economy,
does not have the budget for fresh orders this year. Lockheed
Martin is working with the Indonesian government to reduce the
number of varieties of the C-130 on its fleet before deciding
on a purchase of the newer series of the Hercules, a senior
company official told Reuters.

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(Additional reporting by Nopporn Wong Anan, Fabian Ng and
Kevin Lim in Singapore and Telly Nathalia in Jakarta; Editing
by Raju Gopalakrishnan and Lincoln Feast)

RPT-AIRSHOW-UPDATE 2-Airbus eyes military,civilian deals in Asia