Kuwaiti lessor Alafco delays Airbus orders

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Airbus is pictured at the entrance of the Airbus facility in Bouguenais, near Nantes, France, July 2, 2020. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe

DUBAI (Reuters) - Kuwaiti aircraft leasing company Alafco said on Wednesday it has reached an agreement with Airbus AIR.PA to delay the delivery of aircraft ordered from the planemaker.

Aviation has been one of the industries worst hit during the COVID-19 pandemic and airlines around the world expect it will take years before travel returns to pre-pandemic levels.

The lessor did not say how many aircraft were affected by the agreement, although according to Airbus’ website it currently has 43 A320neo and 10 A321neo jets on order to be delivered.

Under the agreement, advance payments to be made between now and the next three years will instead be due from 2024 onwards, Alafco said in a bourse filing.

Airbus did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Earlier this month, Alafco said it had halved its order for 40 Boeing BA.N 737 jets after ending its legal claim over a cancelled order for the planes.

Alafco's owners include Kuwait Finance House KFH.KW, Gulf Investment Corporation and state airline Kuwait Airways, according to its website.

Reporting by Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel