13 March 2013

The grounding of the 787 may provide an opportunity for Airbus in Japan.

Airbus has had decades of poor sales in Japan. But with the 787 impact to Japanese airlines JAL and ANA, things could begin changing as JAL said that unique sourcing is not preferable.
The compensation that JAL and ANA will ask to Boeing the first day the 787 returns to the operation will be for many $ millions; "Rather than negotiations with Boeing, the important thing now is getting the 787 flying again safely as soon as we can," said JAL's president Yoshiharu Ueki. "However, when the situation has settled down we can and are preparing to begin those talks."
Rival All Nippon Airways, which has more 787s than JAL, said last week it would seek compensation from Boeing once the amount of damages was clearer.

The chairman of Japan Airlines (JAL), which has had to ground its entire fleet of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft after a battery fire, said he had reservations from the start on relying on one vendor. "When I first became chairman of JAL in February 2010 I found out that 100 percent of Japan aircraft were made by Boeing - I felt that was abnormal."

 He added, "In a normal market there is tremendous risk from relying on one vendor. In order to provide good products at good prices, at lower prices a dual vendor system is a must."

The carrier operates 7 of the 50 Dreamliners in service around the world and its entire fleet of 217 aircraft comes from Boeing. The JAL chairman said he was involved in discussions about introducing another vendor when the accident occurred in January.

"This is not to say there was anything wrong with Boeing but a dual vendor situation is preferable. We were just in the midst of deliberating on this when this thing happened," he said.

"We should have been much, much more careful. The only consolation is that there has been no grave accident," he added.

Inamori said balancing the risk of testing out new technologies with safety regulations was a challenge specific to the aviation industry.

"It is unacceptable to jump at every advance of new technological breakthrough. Technology used in aviation must be proficient, endurable and confirmed to be extremely reliable," he added.

Based on the article “JAL Chairman: 100% Reliance on Boeing 'Abnormal'” published in CNBC

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