In August 2017 Boeing will drop 777 production to five per month, its lowest annual rate since 2005.
The decision comes about six weeks after Boeing signalled that rates could fall to as low as 3.5 per month by 2019.
Boeing last delivered fewer than 61 777s annually in 2005.
The reduced rate accommodates “near-term hesitation in some regions” as Boeing waits for the arrival of the re-engined and re-winged 777-9 by 2020, says the airframer.
The drop in orders is partly due to “several ongoing twin-aisle campaigns that haven’t concluded in time to keep the rate steady,” Boeing says in a message released to employees.
Iran ordered 15 777-300ERs as part of a wider package of 80 Boeing aircraft on 11 December, but that commitment had been included in the five per month rate decision, Boeing says.
Boeing expects “some impact” on jobs in 2017 due to the work reduction.
Including the Iran order, Boeing has a total of 165 777-300ERs and 777Fs remaining in the backlog, That includes five 777Fs ordered by FedEx that are due for delivery after 2019 and 11 others with unknown delivery dates according to the Flight Fleet Analyzer database.
To keep rates steady at a five per month rate from August 2017 through December 2019, Boeing needs to keep 145 orders of 777-300ERs and 777Fs in the backlog.