A protracted strike at Boeing's aircraft assembly plant has meant All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Japan Airlines (JAL) are each bracing for possible further delays to Boeing 787 deliveries.
"We are certainly bracing ourselves for the prospect of a further delay" although there has been no official word from Boeing yet, says a JAL spokesman in Tokyo, in an emailed response to a query from ATI, flightglobal.com's sister premium news source. "The impact the strike may have on the current 787 delivery schedule is certainly of great concern" but "Boeing has not informed us of any update to the delivery schedule of our first 787 aircraft at present," says the spokesman.
"We are still expecting our first aircraft to be delivered in October 2009," he adds.
ANA, meanwhile, is suppose to receive its first 787 next August but it too is concerned that the strike might lead to a further delay in 787 deliveries.
"We've had no information from Boeing but we are still working on the basis of an August delivery," says an ANA spokesman in Tokyo.
But this August delivery date, announced a few days ago, fails to take into account the impact that the strike might have, confirms the spokesman.
The prospect of further delays is of concern to the airline, he adds.
ANA's August delivery date already represents a delay because when it ordered 787s in 2004 it announced it would receive the first in May 2008.
JAL placed its 787 order in 2005 and was originally suppose to receive its first 787 sometime in 2008's second-half.
Boeing's top spokesman was in Tokyo a few days ago and told journalists there that: "Frankly, we do not know when the strike will end".
He says: "As soon as the strike does end, our operations will normalize" and then "we will be able to reassess our production, deliveries and programme schedule for the 787".
On 6 September machinists at Boeing in the USA went on strike after talks broke down over a new wages package.
This has already had a ripple effect with some airlines around the world putting their plans on hold because they are unable to receive aircraft from Boeing.
Source: Air Transport Intelligence news