* Boeing to pay more than $500 mln for delivery delays
* Air India expects seven Boeing deliveries in 2012/13
* Air India owes $500 mln to oil cos, $250 mln to airports
By Anurag Kotoky
HYDERABAD, India, March 14 Air India
is negotiating for more compensation from Boeing Co
for delayed aircraft delivery, a senior government
official said, after the planemaker agreed to pay the
cash-strapped airline more than $500 million.
"Two weeks back they (Boeing) agreed to pay a little over
$500 million. We are asking for more, we are talking to them,"
joint secretary at the ministry of civil aviation, Prashant
Sukul, said on Wednesday.
State-owned Air India was seeking nearly $1 billion from
Boeing to compensate for the delays, a source told Reuters last
Speaking at a JP Morgan aviation conference later on
Wednesday, Boeing Commercial Airplanes Chief Executive Officer
Jim Albaugh disputed the claim that Boeing had agreed to the
"We don't comment on deals that we've done. But I can tell
you we're not writing anybody a check for $500 million," Albaugh
Deliveries on the national carrier's 2005 order for as many
as 50 long-range Boeing jets worth about $6 billion have been
delayed by more than three years, disturbing Air India's plans
Air India expects to take delivery of seven Boeing
Dreamliners in the next fiscal year that starts in April,
Chairman Rohit Nandan said on Wednesday.
The state carrier, burdened with a $4 billion debt, is
banking on government support to continue operations. It owes
about $500 million to oil marketing companies and about $240
million to airports.
Rival Kingfisher Airlines is also struggling.
The loss-making private carrier has failed to stick to its
agreed recovery plan, the head of India's aviation regulator
said on Wednesday, adding that the current situation at the
carrier cannot be allowed to continue for long.
India's airlines are likely to lose up to $3 billion in the
fiscal year ending March as the industry's total debt swells to
$20 billion. Five of India's top six airlines are in the red.