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Dubai, UAE - Emirates, the world's largest Airbus A380 operator, is reportedly in talks with the European airframer to receive fewer superjumbo from its remaining order.

Emirates is set to receive eight more A380 jets before Airbus permanently ends the production of the type next year.

The sources said Emirates no longer wanted to take all eight A380s due to the coronavirus pandemic that has shattered global travel demand and which the industry expects could take years to recover from. Bloomberg news agency earlier reported Emirates was in talks to cancel five of the eight A380s.

Asked whether Airbus is in discussions with Emirates about the fate of the aircraft, an Airbus spokesperson said the company was in contact with all its customers but that details remained confidential until any agreements were made public.

Emirates is the world’s biggest operator of the A380 jet with 115 superjumbos in its fleet. It once had a total order of 162 A380s but reduced it to 123 in 2019. The airline had previously said it expected to keep flying the jet into the 2030s.

However, the pandemic has forced airlines around the world to reconsider their strategy and Emirates was now considering retiring some of its existing A380s earlier than planned, the sources said.

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