Airbus posts billions in losses after being hit by corruption penalty

Airbus A400M

Airbus (AIR.PA) pledged higher jet deliveries and operating profit this year, after an worldwide bribery settlement and problems with the A400M transport plane plunged the aerospace group to a 1.36 billion euro ($1.48 billion) net loss for 2019.

The figure is expected to exceed 7.5 billion euros in 2020, said the company.

Net loss for Airbus in the past year amounted to 1.36 billion euros compared to a net profit of $ 3.05 billion euros in 2018.

Airbus turned in a "strong underlying financial performance driven mainly by our commercial aircraft deliveries", chief executive Guillaume Faury said in the company statement.

Airbus's Revenue previous year rose 11% to 70,478 billion euros.

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Airbus plans to increase production of its bestselling A320neo jets - which directly compete with Boeing's grounded 737 MAX - to as much as 67/month by 2023 from its current goal of 63/month in 2021.

Airbus said it had delivered "a record 863 commercial aircraft" past year against 800 aircraft in 2018.

Airbus on Thursday reported a net loss of 1.36 billion euros in 2019 after being hit by a €3.6 billion fine over a bribery scandal and extra development costs for the A400M transport aircraft.

Airbus also announced that it would buy out the Canadian Bombardier in the program for the regional A220 aircraft.

Airbus played down the potential damage from the virus outbreak now rattling airlines and the broader global economy - endorsing traffic growth forecasts that "assume no major disruptions, including from the coronavirus". Here Airbus is struggling with a German export ban on exports to Saudi Arabia. It is also targeting free cash flow of 4 billion euros, a 500 million euros increase. Quarterly revenue rose 4 per cent to €24.31 billion.

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