NEW YORK (Reuters) - Boeing Co (BA.N) is looking to finish flight tests for its much-awaited 787 Dreamliner this weekend, the company’s chief of commercial airplanes said on Thursday.
The 787 is still set for delivery to All Nippon Airways (9202.T) in September and will see a production rate increase later this year, Jim Albaugh said at an industry conference.
Boeing, the world’s second-largest plane maker after Airbus EADS EAD.PA, is about three years behind schedule in delivering the first 787, largely because of snags in the unusually complex global supply chain.
Albaugh also said the company plans to go to its board of directors later this month for approval of its plan to make a version of its best-selling 737 narrow-body plane with a new, fuel-efficient engine.
The “re-engine” program is already seeing strong demand, Albaugh said.
Separately, Boeing said it took 19 new orders for 777s in the week ended August 10, including 12 orders from Cathay Pacific Airways (0293.HK), which were announced a day earlier.
The other seven orders were from an unidentified customer or customers, the world’s second-largest plane-maker said in its weekly order update.
Nineteen 777 wide-bodies are valued near $5.4 billion at list prices. Cathay Pacific ordered eight 777 Freighters and four 777-300ERs.
Boeing has taken orders for a net total of 268 commercial planes so far in 2011.
Shares of Boeing were down 0.45 percent at $57.15 on the New York Stock Exchange.
Reporting by Kyle Peterson and A. Ananthalakshmi; Editing by Derek Caney and Gunna Dickson