Are the world’s main aircraft manufacturers Boeing and Airbus abusing their power position or even secretly control the market with unofficial agreements? Those questions popped up at the International Air Transport Association conference in Miami this week have now resulted in an official IATA investigation in wrongdoing by the big two.
The issue has been put on the agenda by IAG boss Willie Walsh, who is responsible for British Airways, Iberia (Spain) and Vueling (Spain). Walsh feels that Airbus and Boeing are asking too much for new aircraft, deliberately limit the choice of engines, have a production time too long for airlines to wait for and ask too much money for maintenance and modifications. Partly thanks to support by chairman/CEO Alexandre de Juniac of Air France-KLM the legal experts of IATA has started to look into the matter.
Spokespersons for both Airbus and Boeing deny any illegal activities, with one of them saying that he understands that the current competition in the airlines business is tough.
Many of the world airlines have not much to choose between. When it comes to wide-body planes Airbus and Boeing are the only options. For short- and medium-haul distances there are jet alternatives like the new Canadian Bombardier CSeries in development right now and the Embraer E-Jets from Brazil. Other options include the Sukhoi Superjet 100 and the Irkut MS-21 in development in Russia, or aircraft from Ukrainian Antonov and Chinese COMAC.
© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Marcel Burger
Featured image: An Air France Airbus A320 landing at Stockholm-Arlanda IAP (Image © Marcel Burger)