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Airbus to Stop Making World’s Largest Passenger Plane
European aircraft maker Airbus has announced it will stop making the world's largest passenger airplane.
The French-based manufacturer said Thursday it plans to stop making the Airbus A380 in 2021. The A380 made its first test flight in 2005 and began carrying passengers two years later.
The A380 is the largest commercial airplane operating today. The plane has two full levels of seating and normally is equipped to carry at least 500 people.
The announcement came after the company experienced major drops in demand and sales of its A380 in recent years.
In the latest decision, Emirates – Airbus' largest buyer of the A380 – chose to cut the number of aircraft it had already ordered. Airbus officials said Emirates' decision left the company with no "order backlog" to support continued production of the plane.
Airbus chief Tom Enders said the decision to end the A380 program was a "painful" one. "We've invested a lot of effort, a lot of resources, a lot of sweat...but we need to be realistic."
The decision could affect up to 3,500 jobs. It already cost Airbus about $523 million in losses in 2018, the company said.
Airbus said it would enter talks with labor unions in coming weeks over jobs that could be affected. Most of the positions at risk are in France and Germany, but workers in Spain and Britain also could be affected.
In a statement, the head of Emirates said the airline had been a strong supporter of the A380 from the beginning. It said the plane had become a favorite among many passengers and crew members. The decision to cancel the orders marked "the reality" of the current situation, the statement said.
Emirates said it had reached a new $21.4 billion deal with Airbus to replace some of the A380 orders with A350 wide-bodies and smaller A330 planes.
Airbus has promised airline companies it will keep supporting the more than 230 A380s currently in operation.
At first, many industry experts expected the A380 to outlast the Boeing 747, which is celebrating its 50th birthday this year. But many major airlines are increasingly turning to more mid-size planes to support regional flights.
I'm Bryan Lynn.

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crew [kru:]

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n. 全体船员,全体乘务员,(一组)工作人员

 
stick [stik]

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n. 枝,杆,手杖
vt. 插于,刺入,竖起<

 
provocative [prə'vɔkətiv]

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adj. 气人的,挑拨的,刺激的
n. 刺激物

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statement ['steitmənt]

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n. 声明,陈述

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replace [ri(:)'pleis]

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vt. 取代,更换,将物品放回原处

 
announced [ə'naunst]

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宣布的

 
affected [ə'fektid]

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adj. 受影响的,受感动的,受疾病侵袭的 adj. 做

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string [striŋ]

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n. 线,一串,字串
vt. 串起,成串,收紧

 
realistic [riə'listik]

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adj. 现实的,现实主义的

 
confirmed [kən'fə:md]

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adj. 习惯的,积习的,确认过的,证实的 动词conf

 
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