BERLIN May 19 Airbus will keep evolving the
design of its A380 superjumbo in response to Boeing's latest
jet, the 777X, whose recent launch was bolstered by
"unacceptable" Washington state subsidies, the head of the
European planemaker said on Monday.
Fabrice Bregier, chief executive of the planemaking unit of
Airbus Group, hit out at $8.7 billion of tax breaks on
the eve of the Berlin Airshow, amid renewed transatlantic
tensions over mutual charges of unfair aid.
Boeing denies the tax breaks are unfair and says
Airbus continues to receive banned European support.
Airbus said the 777x presented a challenge to its
superjumbo. "We will face after 2020 the challenge of the Boeing
777X. It is clear that as the challenges evolve, the A380 will
have to evolve as well," Bregier told reporters, without
Bregier said he had grown more optimistic about a possible
revamp of the A330 wide-body jet due to strong demand from
airlines, but insisted no decision had been taken.
Airbus has said it plans to decide later this year whether
to upgrade the wide-body jet with new engines to provide fuel
savings and better compete with the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
"I am probably more optimistic than I was in January because
in January I discarded the idea, but I can't tell you whether we
will launch it or not," Bregier said.
Bregier urged European monetary authorities to do more to
protect exporters penalized by a strong euro.
"We can sustain an exchange rate of $1.35 - above it is
different - but I believe that an acceptable exchange rate for
European exporters is $1.25," Bregier said.
(Reporting by Tim Hepher; Editing by Victoria Bryan)