DUBLIN, IRELAND — On Tuesday, the world's leading commercial aircraft manufacturers, Boeing and Airbus, faced backlash over prolonged delivery schedules. A representative from Boeing stated that ramping up production post-pandemic lockdowns is not a simple task like flipping a switch.

During a meeting in Dublin for the aircraft leasing sector, industry players publicly criticized both planemakers for staying behind the delivery schedules. The executive chairman of the American lessor Air Lease, Steven Udvar-Hazy, criticized them for overestimating their production targets. Similarly, one of the biggest customers of Airbus, Irish lessor AerCap, labeled the company's production goals as excessively optimistic.

Mark Pearman-Wright, who heads leasing and investor marketing at Airbus, acknowledged that increasing production has proven to be more challenging than anticipated. However, he emphasized that unforeseen obstacles have not altered the company's plan to manufacture 65 single-aisle jets per month by 2024 and 75 planes per month the following year.

"We've just come out of an unprecedented recession, and it's followed by an unprecedented recovery, followed by a war, in addition to a lockdown of China, which has also had an impact on the supply chain," Pearman-Wright told the Airline Economics conference in Dublin.

In order to alleviate production delays, Airbus has assigned more than 100 procurement experts to work with its indirect suppliers to increase the rate of supply chain production, according to Pearman-Wright.

Similarly, Boeing has also dispatched some of its staff to collaborate with suppliers in order to stabilize the supply chain, says Vice President of commercial marketing, Darren Hulst, highlighting that this is essential to increasing production and meeting their goals.

Airbus and Boeing are, on average, delivering their aircraft to customers three-to-six months late.

Contracts between aircraft manufacturers and their customers include detailed explanations of exceptional circumstances that allow manufacturers to avoid penalties or "liquidated damages" for various types of delays. These excusable delays include natural disasters, fire, flood, earthquakes, and epidemics, among others, as per the reviewed contract documents submitted to regulatory bodies.