Hong Kong's Cathay Pacific Airways has had the delivery of its Boeing 747-8 freighters delayed to the third quarter of 2011, following a slip in the first delivery of the aircraft to launch customer Cargolux.

Cathay, which was originally scheduled to take delivery of the aircraft from January 2011, says it is "disappointed" by the delay.

The Oneworld carrier has 10 747-8Fs on order. It expects to take delivery of six aircraft in 2011 and the remaining four in 2012, says a Cathay spokesman.

"We are naturally disappointed by the delay but pleased that we now have clarity on the revised delivery schedule. We will continue to adjust and manage our cargo capacity accordingly," she adds.

Boeing said late last month it would delay the first delivery of the aircraft to launch customer Cargolux to mid-2011 from late 2010, following a series of problems.

The delay of Cathay's 747-8Fs could lead to a "small reduction" in cargo capacity from May to July 2011, says Cathay's spokeswoman.

This is because the airline had planned to transfer four 747-400BCFs to its cargo joint venture with Air China in Shanghai by mid-2011.

"If this is the case we will manage the cargo schedule by bringing forward planned maintenance and increasing aircraft utilisation," says the spokeswoman.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news