Norwegian could order 787-9s if given 2015 delivery slots: Kjos

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Norwegian Air Shuttle's talks with Boeing about a future 787-9 order centre on securing delivery slots in 2015, chief executive Bjorn Kjos tells Flightglobal.

The airline - which is due to receive the first of eight Rolls-Royce Trent 1000-powered 787-8s this summer - is eyeing the -9 as part of its plans to expand low-cost, long-haul operations.

Norwegian's long-haul services will launch in May between Oslo and Bangkok and New York, initially using wet-leased Airbus A340s. Its 787-8s had been due to start arriving in April, but were delayed by the grounding of the Dreamliner fleet earlier this year due to a spate of incidents involving its batteries.

Speaking in London at the launch of its new Gatwick base - which starts operations in April - Kjos insists that he wants early 787-9 delivery slots. "We are in talks but it is a matter of when we can take them. There are plenty in 2016/17, but we need more in 2015," he says.

The airline is currently an all-Boeing operator, though it has 100 A320neos on order along with 100 737 Max aircraft. Kjos has ruled out the competing A350 for Norwegian's larger widebody needs, saying it will stick with the 787.