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Airbus A350 delivery delayed; CEO moves to allay concerns

Qatar Airways has announced that the delivery of Airbus' brand new A350 aircraft, scheduled for early next week, has been put on hold.

A spokesperson for the Gulf airline told CNBC that "the Airbus A350 aircraft ceremonial transfer of title has been postponed until further notice" but did not give further details of why the transfer of the aircraft had been delayed.

An Airbus spokesman would only say that the company was "working very closely with Qatar Airways to meet our common goal to deliver their first A350 XWB very soon".

Later in the day, the chief executive of Airbus said the aircraft was ready to go and that he was confident of delivery before the end of the year.

"The plane is ready, it's on the tarmac, I'm confident delivery will be very soon," Tom Enders told investors at an event in London on Wednesday, according to Reuters.


Airbus A350
Eric Piermont | AFP | Getty Images
Airbus A350

Qatar Airways was scheduled to fly its first commercial flight with the new A350 in January on its Doha-Frankfurt route.

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The airline had ordered a total of 80 A350 aircraft, making it Airbus' largest order for the plane.

The new A350 is Airbus' first plane to be made primarily out of carbon-fiber and is meant to be a direct competitor to Boeing's 787 Dreamliner which launched in 2011.

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Airbus shares traded down around 10.5 percent in late afternoon trade.

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