Embraer during the second quarter delivered to customers a total 56 aircraft, four more than in the same period in 2008.

The uptick, however, was largely attributed to Embraer's certification and delivery of Phenom 100 aircraft.

"I think it is safe to say that we were able to keep a good enough number given the current economic context, but we had fewer deliveries of more important value," says an Embraer spokeswoman.

For the three months ended 30 June the Brazilian airframer delivered 35 aircraft to the commercial aviation segment, 19 to executive aviation - including 13 Phenom 100s - and two to defence.

The result brings Embraer's first semester 2009 tally to 96 aircraft, just one aircraft delivery short of the record 97 deliveries it achieved during the first half of 2008.

On 30 June the company's firm order backlog was worth $19.8 billion.

Notable contractual arrangements brokered during the second quarter of this year include an agreement between Embraer's Chinese joint venture Harbin Embraer and Hainan Airlines to halve the carrier's original 50-strong ERJ-145 order and stretch out remaining deliveries.

Embraer also signed a contract with Argentina's Austral Lineas Aereas for the sale of 20 E-190s.

"The value of this contract still is not included in the company's firm order backlog for the quarter," says the airframer in a statement.

In the face of the global economic recession Embraer moved into the red in the first quarter with a net loss of $23.4 million. The company revised down its delivery forecast for the 2009 calendar year to 242 from 272. It is maintaining its February guidance.

Embraer chief Frederico Curado has said the firm does not foresee a real recovery for the company before the end of 2011.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news