May 28, 2015 / 12:23 PM / 3 years ago

Airbus COO says will take time needed on A320 output decision

TOULOUSE (Reuters) - Airbus (AIR.PA) will take the time needed to decide whether to increase production of its best-selling A320 aircraft family, Chief Operating Officer Tom Williams said.

People are silhouetted past a logo of the Airbus Group during the Airbus annual news conference in Colomiers, near Toulouse January 13, 2015. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

Williams, who is responsible for engineering and purchasing, was speaking shortly after the company’s sales chief said on Thursday the company was considering raising A320 output and that the market would support an increase to over 60 jets a month.

Asked about the buoyant view from the planemaker’s sales department, Williams said, “We are trying to balance that against making sure the supply chain is ready, so... my message is let’s be convincing.”

Williams said he would not be “boxed into an answer” on when a decision could be made on a possible output increase.

However, he suggested Airbus was no longer too concerned about having to cut output of the larger A330 below an already reduced output target of six planes a month, as executives had warned in January.

“I think six is manageable. There are a number of campaigns going on,” Williams said on the sidelines of a media event.

“We are not going to have huge orders from different places but there is enough incremental business to keep the line ticking over.”

Reporting by Tim Hepher; Editing by Victoria Bryan

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