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Wednesday, 9 January, 2002, 21:58 GMT
Boeing 2001 orders down by half
Boeing commercial airplane
Boeing: No longer flying quite so high
The world's biggest aircraft maker Boeing has said that orders fell by nearly half last year, blaming savage cutbacks by the airline industry in the wake of the 11 September attacks.

The Chicago-based company said on Wednesday that it received a total of 335 new orders during 2001, 45% fewer than the previous year.

The slump in orders also reflects the impact of the US-led global economic slowdown, which had been under way for almost a year before 11 September, the company said in a statement.

On Wall Street, Boeing's shares were marked 40 cents lower to $39.90 on Wednesday.

China Airlines buys big

The company said its largest single customer last year was China Southern Airlines, which placed orders for 22 aircraft.

The company's most popular product remains the 737 narrow-bodied jet.

It delivered a total of 527 jets during the year, slightly more than expected, but expects deliveries to drop to between 350 and 400 next year.

Boeing, though still the global industry leader, is facing increasing competition from Europe's Airbus consortium, which has cornered a large share of the commercial jet market with its new A380 superjumbo.

The company, which derives about 60% of its revenues from sales of passenger aircraft, has been diversifying into other areas in order to protect itself from the cyclical commercial airline business.

See also:

30 Mar 01 | Business
Boeing dumps plans for super jumbo
31 Oct 00 | World
Boeing's workhorse
21 Mar 01 | Business
Boeing to move out of Seattle
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