UPDATE | Air India says that Boeing 787 Dreamliner flights to Australia are back on schedule for later this year, following 'an agreement' being reached between Air India and Boeing over delays to the 787's delivery.
The airline will now receive its first three Dreamliners later this month, although Ajit Singh, India's Minister for Aviation, with an international debut "in August between Mumbai and London", Singh said.
"With the initial six to eight weeks, the first aircraft will be used on domestic routes to enable trainees to practice landing and take-off.
"Australia operations (on the Boeing 787) will commence in August-September," Singh said.
PREVIOUS | So you were eager to hop onto Australia's first Boeing 787 Dreamliner flight later this year, following Air India's plans to start flying the next-gen jetliner from Sydney and Melbourne to Delhi in September?
Not so fast there, cowboy.
Air India has put its Dreamliner ambitions on hold, along with its order for the aircraft itself.
The cash-strapped Indian flag carrier abruptly cancelled the delivery of its first 787 just days before last week's official handover ceremony at Boeing, insisting that Boeing first had to provide compensation for the Dreamliner's production delays.
Air India was initially scheduled to receive the first of its 27 Boeing 787s in September 2008.
The airline, which has been plagued by financial losses and a crippling pilots' strike, is reportedly asking Boeing to cough up as much as US$700m for the Dreamliner's delayed debut.
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