Al Baker's A350 Endorsement

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Qatar Airways is one of the most ambitious airlines in the Middle East and the Gulf carrier's global reach just extended further aftejoining the oneworld alliance at the new Hamad International Airport in Doha today.

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The airline has fast become one of the most influential buyers of aircraft, with a fleet of 135 and a current backlog of 175. It will be the launch airline of the new Airbus A350-900 when the widebody enters service next year. CEO Akbhar Al Baker is sure Airbus will deliver the aircraft on time “because they don’t have lithium-ion batteries on board,” he said, referring to the recent 787 groundings. Al Baker also hinted at more aircraft orders at next month's Dubai air show, and he didn't rule out the Boeing 777X. 

What about future variants? Al Baker was asked whether he would be interested in a double-stretched version of the A350 and the 787-10X. Here’s what he had to say:

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