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Emirates Hints At No Dubai Airshow Orders

Emirates has indicated that it won't be announcing any big orders at next month's Dubai Airshow and said it wouldn't make a decision this year on whether to purchase Airbus A350 or Boeing 787.

Tim Clark, the airline's president, asked whether any orders were likely to be announced at the air show which runs November 8-12, said the carrier was still taking delivery of planes announced at the last show in 2013.

"We're still running the programme we signed for (in 2013), we've got aircraft coming in as you know," Clark told reporters.

"The Xs (777s) come in late-2018 and 2019. That's enough for the time being," he said.

Dubai's flag carrier has said it is looking at an order for 50 to 70 twin-aisle jets - with the main competitors being the Airbus A350-900 and the Boeing 787-10.

"We're looking at both of them... we've got a good comparison opportunity," Clark said.

"Now we're going to the manufacturers about the numbers that we need and the prices they're prepared to offer. We haven't got there in detail yet," he said.

Emirates has received the needed performance data on the A350 as well as from Boeing's 787-8 and 787-9 variants which are already in service, Clark said.

However, he raised doubts about the 787-10's ability to carry heavy passenger and cargo loads to distances beyond eight hours due to its performance in hot climates - an issue for a Gulf-based airline.

"It (787-10) doesn't have the capability of lifting the payload to distances that we would want beyond about eight hours," Clark said.

The A350 meanwhile, can fly for about 14 hours, Clark said, although he also said 85 percent of Emirates' flights do not exceed eight hours.

Many analysts had expected Emirates to announce a big order at its home air show next month as it has done previously.

The carrier, which is based at Dubai International airport, is having to make difficult purchase decisions due to space constraints at the airport.

Emirates, which is pushing Airbus to make a stretched and re-engined version of the A380, is unlikely to shift its base to the new Al Maktoum airport for another decade.

(Reuters)