Strong plane sales ahead?


TESS VIGELAND: The soaring price of oil has been bad news for most of the world's airlines.But plane manufacturers say aircraft sales could take off anyway. One of the world's biggest air shows opens at Farnborough, England today. From London, Stephen Beard reports.

STEPHEN BEARD: Once every two years Farnborough provides a huge showcase for the world's plane makers.

Executives from all the major airlines will be there with their pocketbooks. Last time they placed orders worth more than $40 billion.

On the face of this year's show looks less promising. With The price of oil nudging $80 a barrel, airline costs have soared. But in fact, says analyst Brian Torrer, this could be a bumper show:

BRIAN TORRER: All the problems associated with dearer fuel could actually be quite good for the air manufacturers because it will persuade airlines to trade in their old planes and go for more fuel-efficient ones, new ones.

Airbus will use the show to unveil a new fuel-efficient version of its A350 which is to compete with Boeing's Dreamliner. The old version was considered a bit of a gas guzzler.

In London, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

About the author

Stephen Beard is the London Bureau Chief, providing daily coverage of Europe’s business and economic developments for the entire Marketplace portfolio.


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