PARIS—Embraer Commercial Aviation CEO John Slattery is “very confident” the manufacturer will have orders for the E175-E2 before it is certified in 2021.

The company removed a SkyWest order for 100 aircraft from its backlog in 2018 because hope diminished that U.S. labor scope clauses limiting the size of aircraft that can be flown by regional carrier pilots would change. SkyWest cannot operate the aircraft on behalf of mainline carriers because of the scope limitations. The deal was the only firm commitment for the type.

Slattery said that the first E175-E2 customer “may not be in the U.S.,” but in Europe or Asia-Pacific. The airframer continues to get orders for the E175-E1 from U.S. customers, including a further commitment for up to 39 aircraft from United Airlines, a deal announced at Paris June 17.

The E175-E2 will fly “likely before the end of the year” and be certified in 2021. Embraer previously delayed the program by one year because of the scope situation. Embraer chief commercial officer Arjen Meijer noted that the schedule for the E175-E2 has not been changed.

Embraer has received additional orders for two E175-E1s from Japan’s Shizuoka-based Fuji Dream Airlines and for two E195-E2s from Spanish Canary Islands’ regional carrier Binter. Both orders, while publicized at the Paris Air Show, are related to previously announced orders. The Fuji Dream E175s were a previously ‘undisclosed customer’ order logged in Embraer’s first-quarter 2019 backlog, and the Binter E195-E2s are purchase rights confirmations from Binter’s original contract signed in 2018.

On the potential for developing a turboprop, Slattery said Embraer was “resolute in assessing the business case for a new turboprop with state-of-the-art engines” but was “not remotely close to the announcement of a new program.”

Slattery also stressed that Embraer is “resolute in assessing the business case for a new turboprop with state-of-the-art engines” but is “not remotely close to the announcement of a new program.” The company is investing in research “in a meaningful way,” he added. Embraer will likely set up an advisory board for the project before the end of the year. A turboprop program in the below 100-seat market “to complement the E-Jets would be something natural to consider,” Slattery said.