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Last Updated: Tuesday, 18 July 2006, 20:05 GMT 21:05 UK
Emirates deal boosts Boeing sales
Farnborough scene
Airlines are battling to get deals in the bag at Farnborough
Emirates has announced plans to buy 10 Boeing 747-8 cargo planes, in a deal thought to be worth $3.3bn (1.8bn).

The move will be a blow to Boeing's rivals Airbus after Emirates earlier backed out of plans to buy the freight version of its troubled A380.

The deal was struck at Farnborough, the world's biggest airshow, where manufacturers are vying for custom.

Airbus landed a $1.7bn order from Libya's Afriqiyah Airways, for 12 of its smaller aircraft.

In one of the first aviation deals done with the North African country since trade sanctions were lifted, the Tripoli-based firm made a non-binding commitment to nine A320s and three A330s.

The Airbus parent firm, EADS, also signed a deal to build a training centre for pilots and maintenance in Libya.

Speaking at the show, Louis Gallois, the new co-chief executive of EADS, said the firm is also considering building a technology centre in Britain.

Other deals announced so far at the show include two orders worth $306m from Pegasus Aviation Finance Company won by Boeing, and a $1.1bn contract signed by BAE Systems with the British government for 12 Nimrod coastal patrol aircraft.

Farnborough has also seen Airbus unveil plans for its "extra-wide" long-haul A350.

The A350 model, which is meant to be more fuel efficient, was redesigned after being outstripped in sales by Boeing's Dreamliner 787.

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