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Last Updated: Thursday, 4 January 2007, 16:50 GMT
Boeing enjoys record order book
Model of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner
Boeing is confident about delivering the 787 on time
Boeing took a record number of orders for new planes in 2006, powered by the popularity of its Dreamliner jet.

The US manufacturer recorded 1,044 orders for commercial planes last year, up from 1,002 the year before.

Strong demand for the 787 Dreamliner jet, which goes into service next year, has lifted Boeing in its fight for supremacy against rival Airbus.

Hit by delays to its superjumbo, Airbus is expected to report fewer orders than Boeing for the first time since 2000.

Airbus will release details of its 2006 performance later this month but, as of November, it had secured only 635 orders.

Boeing has taken more than 430 orders for its new 787 so far, including 157 last year.

The firm has staked much of its future growth on the success of the mid-sized, long haul aircraft.

In December, Airbus' owners approved the construction of the A350, intended as a direct competitor to the 787, but it will not enter service for several years.

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