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Boeing Predicts 200 7E7 Orders This Year

Expect Rollout In 2008

Boeing is bullish on the Dreamliner. Speaking with the news service Reuters during a trip to Israel, Commercial Aircraft Marketing Director Randy Tinseth said, "We could have as many as 200 orders in 2004. We are optimistic about the opportunities this year especially for the 7E7."

In fact, Tinseth was calling on one of the few airlines operating an all-Boeing fleet -- El Al, hoping the Israeli airline would place a strong order to follow All Nippon's recent purchase of dozens of 7E7s.

Air New Zealand last week bought two of the mid-sized, fuel-efficient Boeings. And, as ANN reported last week, China Eastern is mulling over whether to buy 7E7s or Airbus offerings.

Boeing hopes it might eventually sell 3,500 7E7s.

"The 7E7 has a very long range capability which means an airplane of this size can service more markets," Tinseth said. "There is more cargo space and it is 20 percent more fuel efficient and it means it weighs less than the competition. Since the planes are lighter weight based fees are reduced."

While the rest of the world bemoans soaring fuel costs, Boeing sees them as a sales tool for the 7E7.

"But oil prices are a double edged sword as higher oil prices effect the economy and profitability of airlines and it lessens their ability to buy new airplanes," said Tinseth.

Touche.

FMI: www.boeing.com

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