Airbus has slipped the development schedule of the A350-900, with entry into service set for the first half of 2014 and the beginning of final assembly put back to early 2012.

The airframer had been hoping to start final assembly of the twinjet by the end of 2011 but had increasingly indicated that technological issues, and a desire to avoid immature sections being delivered too quickly, could force a slip.

EADS chief Louis Gallois said the A350, in particular, continues to have "our highest management attention".

The Airbus parent confirmed the schedule slip in its third-quarter results disclosure.

It said the start of final assembly is now scheduled for the first quarter of 2012 and entry into service for the first half of 2014. The aircraft had been due to enter service in 2013.

EADS said it is booking a charge of €200 million ($270 million) against the A350 programme in its third-quarter figures.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news