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Sun, Feb 21, 2010

Boeing Says It Will Again Be Number One

Albaugh Outlines Four-Year Timeline For Return To Lead Status

The head of Boeing's Commercial Airline Division says the U.S. plane-maker will overtake rival Airbus to be the world's largest civilian aircraft manufacturer within 4 years. 

Speaking to The Financial Times in London, Jim Albaugh (pictured, right) said when the company starts to deliver the 787, coupled with an "already pretty robust" market for the 737 and 777, "you’re going to see the number of deliveries we have in 2013 and 2014 go up significantly from where they are today.”

Airbus took over the top spot in 2003, and has continued to lead in deliveries each year since. But Boeing has secured more orders in some of those years, and Albaugh thinks the 787 may just turn the tide. "We might deliver a few more airplanes than them (Airbus) in that time frame," Albaugh said.

Along with the 787, Boeing first flew the 747-8 earlier this month, which the company thinks will offer some competition to the A380 in the Super-Jumbo market, but for which the company has more orders configured as a freighter.

Still, Albaugh said he would not just "give airplanes away" in an effort to capture market share. He said he walked away from some orders last year that didn't make economic sense for the company.

FMI: www.boeing.com

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