Japan's All Nippon Airways, the launch customer for the Boeing 787, says that it is disappointed with the latest slip in the aircraft's delivery schedule and has urged the airframer to get the programme on track.

"We are disappointed that the first flight of the 787 will be postponed, and urge Boeing to specify the schedule for the programme as a whole as quickly as possible," the airline says in a statement.

ANA has ordered 22 787-8s and 28 787-3s, and was due to take delivery of its first aircraft in May 2008. However, Boeing delayed the programme several times after suffering production and design changes that slid the first delivery to the Japanese carrier by 22 months to February 2010. ANA has ordered four Boeing 767-300ERs as interim capacity before the arrival of the 787.

On Tuesday, Boeing indefinitely postponed the maiden flight of the 787 once again after deciding to reinforce an area within the side-of-body section of the first aircraft. It now says that the first flight, which was due to take place before the end of June, and the first delivery will be rescheduled after the final determination of the required modification and testing plan.

"It will be several weeks before the new schedule is available," says the airframer. Boeing has a total backlog of 866 aircraft from 56 customers for the 787.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news