Hunting is reviewing the future of its aviation interiors business following an agreement with Bombardier's de Havilland aircraft business to terminate a contract to supply interiors for the Dash 8-200 and -300 turboprop aircraft which caused the UK company to set a £30 million ($48 million) provision in 1996.

The deal will relieve Hunting of "all responsibilities and liabilities" after it has supplied certain interior components this year and Hunting says that the "-anticipated losses to be included in the 1996 accounts will be close to the provision" .

The cause of the losses has not been disclosed.

The cost overruns resulted in the loss of the jobs of Hunting Aviation's chief executive, Ian Marsh, and John Adkins, who headed the interiors business. Both men left the company just 11 months after the contract was signed in mid-1995.

The agreement with de Havilland was hailed as a breakthrough at the time when the deal was sealed with the Biggin Hill-based company being appointed as prime contractor responsible for everything from design through to the supply of complete interiors ready for installation on the Canadian production line.

De Havilland has awarded C&D Interiors of California the interiors contract. The US company will now provide interiors for the entire range of Dash 8 and Canadair Regional Jet airliners.

The UK group says that its Biggin Hill plant, built five years ago at considerable cost, is expected to have sufficient workload from work on the Saab 340, AI(R) Jetstream 41 and general-airliner business to keep going while "-prospects for the future of this activity are reviewed".

Source: Flight International