Sept. 26 - In an official ceremony, Boeing delivered the first of its 787 Dreamliner jets to Japan’s All Nippon Airways after a three-year wait. Conway G. Gittens reports.
It was all about show and tell at this Boeing plant not far from Seattle, Washington, the site where the plane maker ceremoniously delivered the very first 787 Dreamliner to customer - Japan's All Nippon Airways. Jim Albaugh, the head of Boeing's commercial division, did the honors. SOUNDBITE: JIM ALBAUGH, PRESIDENT AND CEO, BOEING COMMERCIAL AIRPLANES (ENGLISH) SAYING: "When you buy a car you get a key, when you buy a Dreamliner you get a really big key. And Ito-san. Your new airplane looks beautiful today and this is an airplane that's captivated the flying public. This is an airplane that I think the passengers can't wait to ride in." Boeing finally has a reason to celebrate as this dream becomes a reality. After a three-year wait and billions of dollars in cost over-runs, Boeing is finally delivering the $200 million aircraft to partner ANA. Shinichiro Ito, president and CEO, signed on the dotted line as part of the ceremony, which was part coming out party, part pep rally. SOUNDBITE: SHINICHIRO ITO, PRESIDENT AND CEO, ANA (JAPANESE WITH SIMULTANEOUS ENGLISH TRANSLATION) SAYING: "We will now carefully and lovingly take this plane back to Japan. We will bring with her the well wishes of all of you who worked on her. We will then prepare her to receive our customers, our passengers and send her off to fly in the great wide world." ANA is the first to take delivery of the highly-anticipated wide-body jet, made of lightweight plastic-composites, part of the 821 initial orders taken by Boeing. Boeing Chairman and CEO Jim McNerney. SOUNDBITE: JIM MCNERNEY, CHAIRMAN AND CEO, BOEING (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Today we celebrate a significant moment in the history of flight. Certifying and now delivering an all new airplane is a once in a decade, if not once in a generation, or once in a lifetime achievement of human ingenuity." Now that achievement is in the hands of the airlines. This Dreamliner takes off for Japan on Tuesday, and begins full-flight with customers on October 26th. Conway Gittens, Reuters