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Gulf's Kuwait Airways in talks with Airbus to amend 2014 aircraft order

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FILE PHOTO: A logo of Airbus is seen at the entrance of its factory in Blagnac near Toulouse
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KUWAIT (Reuters) -Gulf carrier Kuwait Airways is in talks with Airbus to amend a previous order to change the type of aircraft it agreed to buy in a deal announced in 2014, Chairman Ali Aldakhan told a press conference on Tuesday.

Chief Executive Ma'an Razoq later told Reuters that the state-owned airline was now seeking aircraft capable of operating longer, non-stop flights so it could expand in Europe, Africa, Southeast Asia and North America.

"To reach these goals, there must be changes in (the types of aircraft)" Razoqi said, adding the financial cost of the Airbus deal would remain the same.

The airline in 2014 agreed to order 25 aircraft - 10 wide-body A350-900s and 15 narrow-body A320neos. The deal was later expanded in 2018 to 28 jets, Aldakhan said without providing further details, including which jets it was looking to swap.

Airbus declined to comment.

Chairman Aldakhan also told the press conference that Kuwait Airways did not take any financial aid from the government during the coronavirus pandemic, and later told Reuters that it is aiming to achieve a balanced budget by the end of 2025.

The airline reported a profit of five million Kuwaiti dinars ($16.58 million) in September while the expectations were a loss of three million dinars ($9.95 million), the chairman said.

"This means that the company is on the right path".

($1 = 0.3016 Kuwaiti dinars)

(Reporting by Ahmed Hagagy; Writing by Shakeel Ahmad;Editing by Louise Heavens)

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