Cargolux in 'continuous contact' with Boeing over 747-8F delay

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Boeing 747-8 freighter launch customer Cargolux says it is in "continuous contact" with the US airframer following the latest delay to the cargo aircraft's entry into service.

Maiden flight of the 747-8 is now slated for early next year, with first delivery to the Luxembourg-based cargo operator now scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2010.

"Obviously that is affecting our planning, we have to assess what that means for us," says a Cargolux spokesman. "Realistically, we have to believe what Boeing is telling us.

"[The] fourth quarter of next year will be the new delivery date - that is when we can actually start flying the aircraft. That is what we are interested in and how they [Boeing] get there is their problem."

The Cargolux spokesman adds the delay is "affecting our contractual situation" with Boeing, but declines to reveal what this might entail. He also notes: "Considering the overall situation, it is too early to talk about leasing other aircraft."

Late maturity of engineering designs on the 747-8 programme has resulted in manufacturing disruption and extra rework.