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British Airways adds Airbus to plane hanger

British Airways is showing its confidence in the future with a new plane order worth more than £4 billion ($8,08 billion).

The order includes 12 (A380) planes from Airbus and 24 (787 Dreamline) airliners from Boeing - it will be the first time that Airbus has entered BA’s long-haul fleet. The aircraft will replace 34 of the airline’s longhaul fleet and will be delivered between 2010 and 2014, British Airways says, adding that it has also taken options for more. Both types will have Rolls-Royce engines. The order is the largest fleet order since 1998, said BA boss Willie Walsh.

The company believes it will be able to increase capacity by up to 4% a year and have more flexibility to tailor future capacity growth in line with market conditions. “The aircraft will be greener, quieter and more fuel efficient with significantly lower carbon dioxide emissions and reduced impact on local air quality. This was a key consideration in the order,” it added. Walsh also emphasized his company’s commitment to a greener future. “They (the planes) are also much quieter than their predecessors, which is of vital importance at Heathrow. Both the A380 and B787 are rated as producing a quarter of the noise level of the B747-400,” he said. (