Airbus met 2018 delivery target prior to final audit

Airbus operationally hit its main industrial target of 800 aircraft deliveries in 2018 after record handovers in December, according to people close to the matter. The final number is subject to ongoing auditing checks, with raw delivery data standing on the 800 threshold, but Airbus is said to be optimistic that the company has averted its first ever missed delivery goal.

The unofficial tally, a European record, includes the Canadian A220 recently taken over by Airbus and reflects a frenetic effort to catch up after engine delays and other snags. It follows days of speculation over whether Airbus had managed to reach its main industrial goal, after cutting it in November due to gaps in engine supplies.

Shares in the European planemaker fell sharply last week after earlier signs that Airbus was unlikely to meet the target, including a report that it had fallen short by up to 9 jets. Industry sources had later said they did not rule out that Airbus would pull off a positive surprise as figures were compiled and audited.

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