PARIS/DUBAI, Nov 9 (Reuters) - Airbus is close to a deal worth at least $14 billion to sell over 30 of its A380 jetliners to Dubai's Emirates in a bid to secure production of its struggling superjumbo until the middle of next decade, two people familiar with the matter said.
The deal, if confirmed, is expected to be announced at the opening of the Dubai Airshow on Sunday. Airbus has been trailing its rival Boeing in terms of orders, going into the industry's largest Middle East event.
Airbus said it does not comment on commercial discussions.
A spokeswoman for Emirates, which is by far the largest A380 buyer with 142 on order and 100 already delivered, said: "We do not comment on rumors or speculation."
The airline's chairman, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, said last week it hoped to order more A380s at the Nov 12-16 event.
The 544-seat aircraft entered service amid huge fanfare in 2007, but its future has been thrown into doubt by sluggish sales as airlines turn to efficient twin-engined jets.
Airbus has not sold a four-engined A380 since March 2015. So far this year it has posted only two cancellations.
Airbus has cut production of the A380 to eight per year from a peak of 30 but needs to secure more sales to secure production at this rate. It recently launched a program of improvements called A380plus to make the double-decker jet more efficient.
Airbus Chief Executive Tom Enders said on Friday he believed it would be producing the superjumbo 10 years from now and was working on sales. (Reporting by Tim Hepher and Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)