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QUEST MEANS BUSINESS

Business at the Farnborough Air Show; Emirates Airlines Orders 30 777's

Aired July 19, 2010 - 14:00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


RICHARD QUEST, HOST, QUEST MEANS BUSINESS: We got Airbus, we've got Boeing, we've got military, and we've got orders by the dozen.

I'm Richard Quest, tonight live from Farnborough Airshow, were everybody means business.

Good evening.

Welcome to Farnborough where the multibillion airshow is underway and barely had day one got going than the orders were rolling in. Boeing and Airbus both announced that they were the recipients of multi-billion dollars worth of orders. Whether it was Airbus from its leasing companies, Boeing from GCAF.

But the big talking point and the big order that came today came from the Middle East Gulf airline of Emirates. Emirates announced it was buying another 30 777 aircraft. The list price of those planes would be more than $9 billion. To be fair and to be true some of the order is already in Boeings books, but that didn't matter. Coming after the great recession, such a vote of confidence from an airline was to be welcomed. The CEO of Emirates Airlines made it clear, he was getting a good bargain and he would be able to fill the planes.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TIM CLARK, CEO, EMIRATES: Filling them is never going to be a problem for us. We are already operating at very high seat factors and the aircraft that we have got planned to arrive in the next few months, next few years, are scheduled to be operated on about 85 percent seat factors throughout the next 10 years. We have not problem there.

QUEST: The critics say, overcapacity, dumping seats and ultimately driving down yield.

CLARK: No, I don't think that's the case at all. Overcapacity, as I've said, is not the case. Dumping seats that suggest that we are selling below cost, which we are not, and driving down yields, on the contrary we raised our fares 35 percent during the course of `09/'10 and the aircraft remained full.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

QUEST: Now, as I mentioned, the two big plane makers also received large orders from the international leasing companies. This airshow is very much likely to be about how the leasing companies are restocking their wares to pass on to the world's airlines. For instance, Airbus got an order for 51 of the A320 family from a new leasing company called ALC. It also picked up dozens of planes from GCAF the GE leasing company didn't leave Boeing out in the cold. Boeing also picked up a multi-billion dollar order from the company.

In the end, though, the star talking point of this airshow is right over there. It is the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, the new plane by Boeing. This is the first time it has appeared outside of the United States. It was supposed to be delivered at the end of this year, for the maiden journey with ANA, All Nippon, of Japan. That may be now slightly late. I discussed not only the Dreamliner but also the market with Jim Albaugh. He is the head of Boeing Civil Aircraft Division.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JIM ALBAUGH, CEO, BOEING COMMERCIAL AIRCRAFT DIV.: The team is dedicated to do that. We have a schedule that supports that. As I have said all along, when you do development programs and you do flight test programs, you can't have issues. Right now we don't have a lot of contingency left in our schedule and it is possible that this certainly could slip into the first few weeks of 2011. But the team is focused on getting the job done this year.

QUEST: But I mean, it is late in the day to be saying, well, maybe November, December, it won't get delivered.

ALBAUGH: Well, here we are, we are in July, this is an airplane that we have been building for seven years. It is well into the flight test program. The airplane is flying exactly like we'd thought it would fly. But we have been having issues with it taking longer to put instrumentation on the airplanes as we have to do different phases of the testing. And we have had a couple of issues with some sensor (ph) problems. Those are the things that have eaten up some of the contingency, but we are going to deliver this thing very close to the end of this year.

QUEST: When will you know whether or not you are going to make the end of this year?

ALBAUGH: Well, it is interesting, you know, some days we'll-or some weeks we'll gain schedule, some weeks we'll lose schedule. I think this will be an interim (ph) thing and we'll know in the several months.

QUEST: It is now up and flying, you've got 800, 900 of them ordered.

ALBAUGH: Yes.

QUEST: Do you believe there is a really serious impact to Boeing's bottom line for the delays overall?

ALBAUGH: Well, certainly we have impacted some of our customers business cases, and we are working out the financial issues with them right now. But again, a back log of 860 airplanes before we delivered the first one, this is going to be an airplane that is going to make a lot of money for our customers, and a lot of money for the Boeing company.

QUEST: Turning to the question of subsidies.

ALBAUGH: Yes.

QUEST: If we may?

We have now at the-we are really no better or worse off in the sense of we have one report against Airbus. We have a second report delayed, which probably will-we're at a stalemate.

ALBAUGH: Yes. You know, I don't know what that second report is going to say. I will say this, though, we want a level playing field. We develop our airplanes the old-fashioned way. We use our own money to do that. We want others to do that. We want others to abide by the WTO rules and regulations.

QUEST: Tom Enders, of Airbus, in his statement about the initial Airbus orders, in the Airbus report, makes a very good point, doesn't he? The world has moved on. Since the complaints were fist launched. And actually there are other state-funded aircraft manufacturers that are of far greater concern to both Airbus and Boeing.

ALBAUGH: Yes, it is interesting. Tom is interested subsidies so some of the new competitors are going to get. So, I think we have something in common there. But, again, what we're looking for is a level playing field, whether we are competing against the Europeans, or the Chinese, the Japanese, the Russians, that is what we want.

QUEST: Does the Chinese and the Russian, and even the Brazilians, the Embraer, do they worry you about their level of services?

ALBAUGH: Well, let's put it this way, I worry about all the competitors. And I'm assuming they are all going to be successful. Competition makes us better. Competition makes us be more innovative, use newer technologies, but in terms of the subsidies, certainly I worry about that, because we use our own monies.

QUEST: As you look to the forecast that we are seeing now, the worst is clearly over. Will '11 be a good year for Boeing and for orders?.

ALBAUGH: We're seeing significant improvements in the market this year. We think that in 2011 you'll see a lot of our customers start to make money and we think you'll see the orders come back dramatically in 2012. We're going to have a very good 2010. We're going to be announcing a lot of orders here this week. A lot more than we anticipated at the beginning of this year.

QUEST: You have used to important words there. You talk about "significant" and "dramatic".

ALBAUGH: Yes, yes.

QUEST: CEOs don't normally use those words.

ALBAUGH: Well, I'll tell you what, I think this is going to be an exciting week. And I think both from Airbus and from Boeing, you are going to see a lot more orders announced than anybody anticipated.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: Now you may have wondered whether it was just Jim Albaugh of Boeing, that was showing such optimism, "significant" and "dramatic". Well, it wasn't. The head of the rival Airbus, civil aviation division, John Leahy was also expressing extreme optimism when I caught up to him and asked him was he expecting to have a bumper year this, and next.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOHN LEAHY, CEO, AIRBUS: Well, what I really said was, in the first six months of this year we sold 131 aircraft. And I expect, my target, in the next five days, during the airshow, of more than double that.

QUEST: You know you have already doubled that. They are in your back pocket.

(LAUGHTER)

LEAHY: A few might be. Over 100 is, but not substantially over that number. I'm still negotiating deals. We really don't prepackage deals. I have signed this deal with Steve Hazy, about 45 minutes ago.

QUEST: You knew it was coming.

LEAHY: We were working it, and we were closing it, and the last concession he got was 45 minutes ago.

QUEST: As you look to next year and the year after, where do you-what are you hoping for?

LEAHY: I think we're at the bottom of the cycle, and what I'm hoping for is that the bottom holds and we now are debating the slope of the recovery curve. Not whether or not we're in a recovery, but just how fast is that recovery? I predict it will be a lot faster than people think.

QUEST: Why? More upon-because you are not a man of blind optimism, so why?

LEAHY: The world economy needs aircraft. You can't have growth in GDP without growth in air traffic. I was with the vice minister of CAC, in China, last Friday. And he was telling me that growth, so far, in the first six months of the year was 19 percent, year over year, in China. The engine of growth is going to be China, India, Latin America.

QUEST: Finally, as we look at the range, which is your biggest project, and most important, significant thing on your plate at the moment, the 350?

LEAHY: Well, the 350 is clearly an important project. Making money on the 380 is another important project, the airlines are making-

QUEST: That's not going to happen in our lifetime.

LEAHY: Well, yes, it will. We will have break even, Richard, by 2014. In fact, I would predict that we might even be there earlier.

QUEST: You are telling me now, you have sold 250, 260?

LEAHY: Yes.

QUEST: Break even is about 450, 500?

LEAHY: No, break even on the airplanes that are going out the door, remember we have written off some of the development cost in years gone by.

QUEST: Right.

LEAHY: Now the point is to break even on the airplane that is going out the door. That check that you are getting for that airplane from the customer has to be greater the amount of man hours and materials that went into building it.

QUEST: Finally, when do you expect to announce another 380 order?

LEAHY: Well, before the end of the year. And by the way, with 32 this year, I've already exceeded all of our wildest dreams for it this year. But I expect one more order, at least, before the end of the year.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: John Leahy, the head of commercial airplane sales at the Airbus company. And that 2014 deadline for breaking even of the planes, the 380s, going out the door.

Now, when we come back in just a moment. Never mind one sheik, we've got two. We've got a chief, a chairman, a ruler and they're all going to tell me why Emirates is spending so much money on new aircraft, in a moment.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: Emirates Airlines of Dubai has been making a great deal of news of late. At the Berlin Airshow it announced orders for 32 A380 Superjumbos taking the fleet to 90. And here at Farnborough today they have purchased a further 30 777s from Boeing that mean at 101 in the 777 fleet, they'll have the largest number of any airline in the world. For an area that has been beset by financial problems, I asked Sheik Mohammed bin Al Rashid Al-Maktoum, the prime minister of the UAE, and the ruler. I first of all, I asked him about Dubai, itself, and he told me that the fact that they were able to make such orders was a clear indication that the crisis was over and the challenges lay ahead. Then we turned to the airline Emirates, itself. And I was joined by Sheik Ahmed bin Saeed Al- Maktoum, the chairman, chief executive. With the two sheiks next to me, it was time to ask why they were buying so many planes.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: An extraordinary large order on top of an even bigger order in Berlin. What is it all about?

SHEIK AHMED BIN SAEED AL-MAKTOUM: It is all about my boss, you know, he always push to be number one. I think we'll achieve that as one of the largest airlines, with capacity that today are flying, which made a lot of airlines behind us (ph). And also, those two big announcements that we announced, I think, always maybe we announce for a lot of people, at the wrong time.

QUEST: But can you fill these planes in the future? All those A380s, now over 100, 777s?

S. AL-MAKTOUM: I think, Richard, you know when we talk about the 380s, only 100 seater bigger than a 777, they are, so it is not that big of a capacity. We will always be flying at certain routes over 90, 95 percent.

QUEST: Your Highness?

SHEIK MOHAMMED BIN RASHID AL-MAKTOUM: I think we are the biggest operators of 777, yes?

S. AL-MAKTOUM: We are, Sir, we are one of the biggest, or one the biggest today.

QUEST: When you gave your instructions, Your Highness, for what you want Emirates to be. What are you telling him you want it to be?

R. AL-MAKTOUM: It is a big story. I remember when they wanted to start Emirates. They wanted protection, I said, no, go in the field and find your way out. And that is what we are doing. I just have a vision, and, you know-

S. AL-MAKTOUM: I think that was what His Highness said. We did actually when we were very small, at the early stage, we said, you know, we want some protection in terms of not too many airlines can be the best. Actually he said, no. I think we did learn it, I think that was the best advice at that time, and a good start. Because it made us learn it the hard way.

QUEST: And you're pleased? What would you tell him, what he has to do next? Give him his, give him his next set of instructions.

R. AL-MAKTOUM: Well, I think we just have to keep it up. You know? We have to-we have to have our vision and broaden our vision in the way that we move forward, our vision becomes wider.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: The two sheiks from Dubai, talking about how they view the future of Emirates.

We always knew that the leasing companies were going to be very big at this particular airshow. But it didn't take long for an old player in a new guise to be making his mark felt. Steven Udvar-Hazy, used to be the head of ILSC, the aircraft leasing division of the insurance company AIG. Now, he's on his own, and it hasn't taken him long, within weeks, he started up ALC, a new leasing company and today he announced an order for 51 planes of the A320 family. I asked Steven, so soon after ILSC, and he was already buying planes by the dozen.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

STEVEN UDVAR-HAZY, CHRM., CEO, AIR LEASE CORP.: Well, I went home and I was retired for about three hours. And my wife said, get out of the house, do something productive. So, I formed a new company and we got to work. And it is very exciting.

QUEST: You didn't just form a new company. You got out and you bought billions of dollars worth of planes, quickly.

UDVAR-HAZY: Yes.

QUEST: Why do you want to keep doing it?

UDVAR-HAZY: Well, this is my passion. I think the airline industry is going to go through a tremendous growth period. There are parts of the world that are growing in traffic, at double digit rates every year. The airlines have to replace a lot of aging aircraft. So, we think this is a dynamic business with huge opportunities.

QUEST: What about overcapacity in the market? You are going to put these in, ILSC is still putting planes in, everybody is putting planes now, in the market. Have we learned anything?

UDVAR-HAZY: Yes, we have. ILSC doesn't have anymore Airbus, single- aisle aircraft on order.

QUEST: You know their plans, you know what they are going to do. How do you feel about what all happened?

UDVAR-HAZY: Well, it is tragic. I mean, AIG was a great company, ILSC is a great company, and unfortunately circumstances came about that none of us had control over. I felt the time was right to create a new company that is completely-from a clean sheet of paper. And none of these legacy issues of the past.

QUEST: And a final question. How do you start without being bitter, looking at the past?

UDVAR-HAZY: I'm not bitter. I'm looking forward.

QUEST: That is what I'm saying, how does one do that?

UDVAR-HAZY: Because in aviation, we're all optimists. We all look forward. We can't look back. We learn from our experiences, but there is no bitterness.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: Steven Udvar-Hazy, one of the biggest names in aircraft leasing, who is now head of a new company. And incidentally, he told me that he expects to have nearly 1,000 planes within just a few years. That is what you call buying them by the dozen.

When we come back, in just a moment, we turn our attention to "Future Cities" and we are once again in Istanbul, where nearly half the population is young, and demanding a greener way of life. Can that be met? "Future Cities" will answer that in just a moment. QUEST MEANS BUSINESS at Farnborough.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: If you look at all the aircraft behind me here at Farnborough they all have one thing in common, besides being extremely expensive, they all exhibit the very latest in design for the environment and for green technology, whether it is the 787, the A400M, or the Superjumbo. The aviation industry is very aware that the fluctuating price of oil is the difference between profit and serious loss. Well, these days it is not just in the air, on the ground, too. There is huge concern about the making life sustainable, and greener. And no where is that clearer, than in Istanbul. Where we not visit, as we continue our look into future cities and the greening of Turkish capital.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST (voice over): Istanbul, the capital of three empires is no stranger to change. And as with all modern cities, it is going green. Erdinc Varlibas is building the Varyap Meridian, like his first green, mix- use building.

We did mix unique design characters and the green aspects, I can say, that is one of the unique projects in Europe, also, not only in Turkey.

QUEST: The Turkish Green Building Council says there has been a big rise in interest in sustainable architecture. But it says the Turkish should look to their past when building their future. This is Topkapi Palace, the seat of the Ottoman Empire, and one of the oldest buildings in Istanbul.

DR. DUYGU ERTEN, TURKISH GREEN BUILDING COUNCIL: It is a very hot day today. It is hot and humid. And here, it is lovely. There is a breeze, it is not hot. And we are really enjoying the shade. And these are all qualities that we look for in green buildings. And they have done a great job. These are local materials, mostly coming from a very (AUDIO GAP) process, there is always shade. That keeps the inside of the building cool, also. Then you look at the walls, they are high. And you also see higher windows, which brings a lot of sunshine in. And then you enter, inside it is cool. You don't need an air conditioner when you are living in Topkapi Palace.

I think the Turkish construction industry should really consider the old Turkish architecture today, and redesign, reinvent themselves.

QUEST: Erdinc Varlibas invited a group of architects competing for the tender, to the city. And the first place he took them? Topkapi Palace.

CHRIS JONES, ARCHITECT, RMJM ISTANBUL: On arriving at the city he took us straight to Topkapi. He shared his love of the space, the architecture itself, but also the principles employed. The principles employed there were something of great interest to us. Because they are, in essence, sustainable, the use of water and the deep eaves for shading.

A green building is actually a building starting from the design phase, from the design phase, construction, this includes water efficiency, energy efficiency. The best use of land.

QUEST: For the architects even the orientation of this building is important.

JONES: Minimize the east/west facades where glare and heat gain is maximized and therefore reducing the cooling loads on the building. For photovoltaics we have now found a hybrid system that is working very well. It is going to be on the roofs of the towers. And it is actually a combined system of photovoltaic panels that produce electricity, and piping for solar heating. So, you get hot water and electricity from one system.

The technologies are moving so quickly that at the beginning of this project we weren't even aware that this was available to us. Now it is , we are specifying it, it is getting used.

QUEST: Half of Turkey's populations is under 30. These university students are studying sustainable buildings, believing their future is in green design.

BURCU ARKUT, ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN STUDENT, BILGI UNIVERSITY: Some have a huge history, and it has a really huge future, at the same time. So that is why I signed up for it, green architecture class.

SECIL TEZER, ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN STUDENT, BILGI UNIVERSITY: In every continent, in every country, it is the topic. Even in the parliaments, they are discussing this.

QUEST: As in any city, the majority of buildings here are residential. If the green movement is to gain momentum, then it is these properties which have to be targeted. And this responsibility, says Doctor Erten, lies with the government.

If they were to go a long with green principles, and they were to design the houses they build, every year they build close to 400,000 houses a year, it would be a fantastic way to go, but they're not there yet. And that is why we need to push government really hard for the green movement to be accepted (ph).

JONES: There is this flowing, kind of undulation to the city, and it is something that really inspired us in the form of the actual towers.

QUEST: This development will be finished next year, the new modern addition to Istanbul's ancient skyline.

JONES: It is progressive, it is ambitious, it is pioneering, it is exciting, it is vibrant, it is aspiring, and everything that any good city should be-and it is looking for the future whilst trying to respect and learn from the past.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: The young population of Istanbul and their demands for a greener capital, from Turkey. We'll have more from "Future Cities" at this time next week. And when I come back in just a moment, the rumors were that the well was leaking, but now it seems the cap is holding. So, is it all smooth sailing in the Gulf of Mexico? We'll have a report from the region. QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, we are live at the Farnborough Airshow, good evening.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: Hello, I'm Richard Quest, QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, tonight, live from Farnborough Airshow, this CNN. And on this network the news always comes first. And for that Fionnuala Sweeney is at the CNN News Desk -- good evening.

FIONNUALA SWEENEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hello, Richard.

Ahead of a major conference in Kabul, a leaked document suggests that Afghan President Hamid Karzai will announce plans to conclude international combat operations in his country. This apparently by the end of 2014. The Kabul Conference starts on Tuesday, involving 70 nations. It will focus on Afghan security, governance and economic development.

Indian officials say victims of Monday's train crash will get financial help. At least 60 people were killed and dozens injured when one train hit another at a station in West Bengal. Rescuers are using gas cutters to free people stuck inside the wreckage. The cause of the crash is under investigation. India's rail network has a poor safety record.

Britain's temporary immigration cap is now in effect. It imposes monthly limits on the number of non-EU workers allowed into the U.K. and it's meant to head off a rush for work permits ahead of a permanent cut that's to be introduced next April. The government wants to scale back migration to the levels of the 1990s. Officials still working at exactly what the permanent cap will be.

Back to Richard at the Farnborough Air Show.

QUEST: Many thanks, Fionnuala.

Let's turn our attention and stay with the BP oil spill.

The seal on the newly capped Macondo Well appears to be holding. There had been early fears that some form of hydrocarbons might be leaking or seeping into the sea from the seabed.

Let's get the latest on that.

David Mattingly is in the region and joins me now live -- David, when I woke up this morning, the story was there was a potential leak.

What is the truth now?

DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: What we're hearing now from officials at the White House is that there has been a seepage discovered about three kilometers away from the well site. This is a seeping of methane gas that is coming up from the -- the bottom of the ocean through the mud and through the rock there.

They don't know what this means, but that could be a sign that this oil that they've kept under pressure now for three -- more than three days -- has somehow found its way out of the well and is now seeping up through the rock and the mud and could lead to bigger problems. And that's what they want to avoid as they continue this test.

Again, they don't know what to make of this, but that is one of the early warning signs that there could be a problem. So they want to proceed cautiously.

And here's what one White House official was saying this morning.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CAROL BROWNER, WHITE HOUSE ENERGY ADVISER: We will use all means necessary to determine how much oil has escaped and to -- to use all legal tools available to us to ensure that BP is held accountable and all appropriate fines are -- are paid.

But in the meantime, we want to make sure that this cap is functioning properly. In the event that it isn't and that it has to be reopened, people need to remember there are vessels that can move in to contain the leaking oil. We've asked BP for a new plan on how quickly they can execute on those vessels.

But we're going to be watching this very, very closely, as we have been from the beginning.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MATTINGLY: You heard what Carol Browner was saying there, Richard. If they determine that this seepage is the sign of a bigger problem, one that they were trying to avoid, they could open this well back up. And that would be a three day process, where they would be relieving the pressure, that oil would be spewing back into the Gulf of Mexico so that they could hook up these lines and take that oil up to the surface to containment vessels, much in the same way they were doing before they had this cap on.

QUEST: David, it is tempting to continually say what on earth are they up to?

It sounds as if they are bordering on incompetence or inefficiency.

But surely what we're really seeing here is just how difficult and how much at the extremities of technology we've pushed oil exploration.

MATTINGLY: What you're also seeing is the extreme caution that the Obama administration is imposing on this process. They've already seen one big disaster and they are determined to avoid possibly creating another one, which they are afraid that if they don't watch what's going on very carefully, that they could actually do that.

If this turns out that there -- there is a leak down there in that well, which is what they're continually testing for, they could see smaller oil leaks popping up all over the place around that well, through the sea floor. That's something they won't be able to stop. And this is a fear that they've had from the very beginning, as they first started any sort of attempt to try and stop this well.

So this is just a continuation of that caution that we've seen the entire time.

QUEST: David Mattingly in the Gulf Region.

Many thanks.

Keep us informed when there is more to tell us.

Now, BP was the largest faller on London's FTSE if you look at the numbers. Having seen some good, strong gains, the share price is up more than 30 percent since its recent low. Now, the shares were down 4.75 percent. There were red arrows down across the region. Disappointing housing data from the U.S. was down. Investor confidence also took a knock, as we saw across the region, share prices being fairly -- well, as you can see, it's a down, dismal sort of session.

When we come back, in just a moment, there is something really uplifting about our next story, quite literally. This man wants to go to Australia and he's not going first class. He's not going business. No, he's going in a microlight. I'll tell you why Dave Sykes is a record- breaking pilot, cabin crew and passenger, in just a moment.

QUEST MEANS BUSINESS from Farnborough.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: Tonight here at Farnborough, there is one pilot that is gearing up for a record-breaking flight. And it's not around the corner. It is from the U.K. to Australia. It would be remarkable for any pilot, but as you can tell, Dave Sykes is confined to a wheelchair.

His solo flight global will be in a microlight plane that he flew into Farnborough today.

We'd hoped to have the plane behind you, but, Dave, they wouldn't let us get it close to the A380.

Dave Sykes joins me now.

When he flew in today, it was a picture perfect landing.

Did -- was it a good landing for you, when you came in today?

DAVE SYKES, PARAPLEGIC, MICROLIGHT PILOT: It was a bit hectic. We had a cross wind there. But it was all right, yes.

QUEST: How many -- how many hours have you been in the -- the microlight?

SYKES: Well, today or altogether?

QUEST: Generally, yes.

SYKES: I've done over 650 hours now, flying for 10 years in the flex wing type of microlight, yes.

QUEST: And do -- were you always in -- in a wheelchair when you started flying or was this something that you developed after you...

SYKES: Yes, I started flying after I was in the wheelchair. I've been in the wheelchair for 16 years now. And I've been flying for 10 years now.

QUEST: But it begs the question, Dave, why?

Which then -- then follows on with how difficult was it, because it's one thing to fly in a fixed wing, but a microlight is even more challenging in many ways.

SYKES: It -- it makes your arms ache, you can say that. But I had a good instruc -- several good instructors that was...

QUEST: Did they think you were mad when you said, I want to fly?

I want to fly in a microlight and I'm going to do it solo eventually?

SYKES: No. No, not at all they helped me every which way they could to get me (INAUDIBLE) in the skies.

QUEST: And how -- how much has your microlight had to be adapted for your -- for your style of flying?

SYKES: I've had to have special hand controls made for the actual base back (ph), which has got a twist grip hand dial on it. And also for the ground handling on the steering, which is like a -- a lever for steering with a motor bike brake on it, as well.

QUEST: Wow!

Why do you like doing it?

SYKES: It's just like a motorbike in the sky, really.

QUEST: Oh, no. No, no, no.

SYKES: Yes.

QUEST: No.

SYKES: No, it is, seriously.

QUEST: All right. So -- so this idea of solo flight global, London to Sydney, why are you doing this?

SYKES: Because it's never been done bifor -- before any -- by anybody in a wheelchair. And it's been done once before by an air bubble (ph) body guy in '98. Nobody has done it since.

QUEST: So because nobody has done it since by an able-bodied, a paraplegic decided you're going to have a go and get yourself in the record book?

SYKES: Exactly.

QUEST: What do you need?

SYKES: I need 30,000 pounds, actually, to make...

QUEST: That's about $45,000.

SYKES: Yes. To make it happen. And I'm just looking for some -- for sponsors, really, to make it happen, which will be on the 2nd of September.

QUEST: And then how long do you expect it's going to take?

How many stops?

SYKES: There's going to be roughly 55 stops, if everything goes according to plan, through 18 different countries. It's going to be like 12,000 nautical miles.

QUEST: What's going to be the most difficult thing, because if -- if -- if we accept -- if we accept that flying is flying and you flew from wherever you flew today, so what difference is it from, say, going from here to Sydney other than the fact you're doing it day after day after day?

SYKES: I think the biggest problem will be the language, you know, from the different countries, you know, because I don't speak anything else except English. But I think that's the only -- the biggest problem.

QUEST: And, of course, just if anything does go wrong, it will be very challenging for you.

SYKES: It will -- it -- yes, I'll have to start thinking about it a bit more, yes.

QUEST: Dave, we will follow you closely and hopefully you are -- our viewers will join in and follow him, as well, and maybe give him a wave onward.

Dave, many thanks, indeed for joining us here at Farnborough and -- and talking about it.

Many thanks, indeed.

SYKES: Thank you.

QUEST: Now, the weather has been absolutely, blisteringly beautiful at Farnborough -- Guillermo, I don't know what you did, but it worked.

GUILLERMO ARDUINO, CNN METEOROLOGIST: I told you on Friday. So there are some clouds and some rain moving in, unfortunately. I have specific forecasts in a second.

It is because of all this and it's moving closely. It's a low pressure center with storms that comes into the area. So I'm going to show you, with respect to London, where Farn -- Farnborough is -- here, southeast of it. And the weather is calling, of course, for some rain showers for tomorrow -- for Wednesday, I mean -- and for Thursday it's going to be fine again. So more clouds increase as we are going to see.

Everything is spinning around. You see by the end of the 48 hour period, then England gets much better.

The winds are not going to be terrible, but toward the end of that 48 hour period, we will see those clouds on the increase, as well.

Well, look, we have the high pressure center still over this part of Europe bringing hot conditions despite the fact that we have the scattered showers here in the northwest. But the jet is defining everything. So it's going to continue to be hot. Look at the marks that we are -- we've reached -- 37 in Madrid; Genoa in Italy, 40 -- 34; Moscow, 31; also, Helsinki close to 30 degrees. And the east is where we will see, especially in the evening hours, the thunderstorms and also tornadoes and damaging wind possibly.

But no delays in the way here in the west -- Amsterdam, Paris, London looking fine; Munich, Copenhagen, Zurich -- when you see the green boxes, that means that we think that, weather-wise, there will be no problem at all at these airports. You see BCN Barcelona, MXP in Milano. So things are fine.

Again, the satellite is showing the low here in the open ocean and the associated front there. Thunderstorms here in the east, from Belarus, Ukraine into Romania, Moldavia, too. The heat is going to continue over there.

Twenty-five the high in London for Tuesday. So that looks pretty good -- and, Richard, we're looking at this new tropical cyclone. It's a tropical depression in the South China Sea, pretty much taking the same path that Konsong (ph) took before. And. You're going to see that it's moving closer to Hong Kong this time on a tropical storm basis. It's a little bit too early to say if this is going to happen exactly as it appears here, but this is the -- the trend. So we'll let our viewers know what's going to happen.

At the same time, Konsong is gone. It was preventing the rain from descending into the south of China. So we may see some more rain. We're talking about devastating effects, probably a repeat in China of the floods of 1998. The Gorges Dam, it's actually over capacity. And we're talking about 70,000 in terms of the volume that we have there per second -- meters, cubic meters per second.

So a lot of parts of China are under stress right now -- Richard.

QUEST: We thank you for that.

Guillermo at the World Weather Center.

And don't touch any buttons. We'll happily have the weather just as it is, at least here.

Now, when we come back, we have much more for you on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS live from the Farnborough Airshow. I'm going to give you the techniques for recognizing the Dreamliner 787. And I'll introduce you to this man.

Why?

Because all this -- well, not the plane, but the ground -- it's all his airport.

What does he do with it for the rest of the time?

QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.

Good evening.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: There's more to the Farnborough Airfield than just the biannual Farnborough Airshow. This is actually a working airfield for private aviation. There are aircraft that have been coming in and out here all day. Every other year, though, of course, it shares the honors with Paris. Farnborough hosts the largest airshow in the world.

Which is why, of course, we really need to ask, is all this land just sitting here wasting time for the rest of the 23 months?

The man who I think I know answer to for that is Brandon O'Reilly, the exclusive of TAG Farnborough.

Good evening to you.

Straightforward -- what do you do with all this when it's not hosting the airshow?

BRANDON O'REILLY, CEO, TAG FARNBOROUGH AIRPORT: Well, first of all, it's a very important air show and we're very pleased to host it here at Farnborough. But outside of the air show, it's a very important business aviation facility. In fact, it's Britain's biggest business aviation facility and is used for private and corporate jets year round.

QUEST: Do you think -- I mean it's -- it's a good, what, 40, 50 miles -- a half hour from the center of London...

O'REILLY: Thirty-five miles.

QUEST: Thirty-five miles from the center of London.

Is it within that ambit for London that corporations would -- will use it?

I mean I see there's lots of private jets over there at the moment. But they could be here because of all this stuff.

O'REILLY: Well, year on year, we see an increase in the name of movements here, in the name of flights at Farnborough. And this really does fit very nicely into the -- the isochrome, as I think they call it, of -- of travel into West London. So it's very important for the west side of London for business aviation travel.

So we discovered that over the past 10 years and we've grown and grown year on year. And we're now seeing 10 percent more flights this year than we saw last year. So we really are seeing recovery.

QUEST: Is there ever any realistic possibility that smaller, more regional air -- albeit important airfields like this -- they have a -- a role to play, which, of course, we saw Ryanair, for example, has very much expanded the role, hasn't it, by flying to more and more secondary airports?

O'REILLY: Well, this is a -- I don't describe it as a regional or secondary airport. We prefer to call it a niche airport.

QUEST: It's the same thing, a different expression.

O'REILLY: So we see a very important role for -- for this airport.

QUEST: A niche airport?

O'REILLY: It's a niche airport. Other airports in Britain will have business aviation flying into them and in -- indeed, around London. But, really, their business is commercial aviation -- a slot at Heathrow should be used for a 747 or an A380. The business aviation -- business jets should really be coming to Farnborough Airport, which was don -- nominated by the government in the early '90s to be the southeast of England's nominated business aviation airport.

QUEST: If we talk about the airshow, let's just talk about it. It happens every second year. It's biennial.

How significant is it and in terms of real business being done here, rather they have a orders just being stacked away just for the -- for the day itself?

O'REILLY: Oh, I think there is a significant amount of business done here. I was here at 8:30 this morning and there's a lot of business actually transacted here that hasn't been announced yet. I'm convinced of that.

The airport -- the airshow is (AUDIO GAP) business to the local community. There are businesses that benefit significantly from...

QUEST: Oh...

O'REILLY: -- the airshow being here every two years.

QUEST: I can understand that. But that, of course, is -- is -- it is, to some extent, a -- it's not here for the local community. It's here so that the aviation and aerospace industry can do business with each other.

O'REILLY: It is. But it's also important for the local community. I don't -- I don't think we should underestimate that.

QUEST: Right.

O'REILLY: But I think business is transacted here, not just stacked up for -- for signing papers. Absolutely not.

QUEST: And we -- we will -- many thanks, indeed.

O'REILLY: Thank you very much.

QUEST: Thank you very much.

Brandon O'Reilly joining me there, another of those little corporate jets heading off down the runway.

Now, look, I couldn't tell you the name of that jet. I can barely tell you that that's a 330. But if you look behind me over there, you see the Dreamliner.

Well, 863 of them have been sold.

So how will you know whether Dreamliner has come to an airport near you?

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST (voice-over): A quick look, a first glance -- yet without the name on the tail, it isn't that easy to see what is different. But look more closely and there are plenty of telltale signs that this is a new aircraft.

(on camera): Let's start at the nose -- a sharper, sleeker, much more pronounced nose on the front of the 787, with large side windows. Look out from the front and just at the sides -- well, it could only be the 787.

Now, look at the windows. Boeing has made a lot of noise about the fact the windows on the Dreamliner are much bigger, allowing more light into the aircraft. But what will really excite us will be the new technology -- innovative, interesting and fiddle with to our content. You can make them darker. When you've got bored of that, you can make them lighter again. Oh, yes, hours of fun.

(voice-over): They call them the chevrons or maybe the cookie cutter, at the back of the Rolls Royce engines. It's probably the most distinctive part of the 787. Rolls Royce put them there to reduce the noise from the engines and help the performance. If all else fails, then look to the beautiful wings of the 787. Everyone pretty much agrees, the uniquely shaped wing, with its sweeping arc at the end, gives it a very distinctive profile.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The wings -- those carbon wings, very graceful, the way they're swept back, the way they unload when the plane lands. It's beautiful, just beautiful. I mean I think if you're -- if you're around airplanes, you look for things that are fundamentally different and improved. The wings on this airplane are very special.

(END VIDEO TAPE)

QUEST: So there you have the -- the waxing lyrical about the Dreamliner. A 767 redux that's certainly a beautiful aircraft. And even if it isn't quite as recognizable as the A380, the super jumbo, soon the 787 will be at an airport roughly where you are.

We need to update you on the New York markets, which I shall quick do. The Dow Jones Industrials are 70 points to the good. That's a gain of .07. One big -- one of the advantages of being around that area is it's relatively easy to work out exactly the moves -- 10171. We had wondered whether 10000 was going to be in jeopardy.

And a reminder of the main news from Farnborough tonight. Emirate Airlines of Dubai has announced that it is to order 30 777 aircraft worth more than $9 billion. The deal will mean Emirates 777 fleet is 101, which, of course, becomes the largest in the world.

Other major orders, GCAF, the leasing company, ordered dozens of planes from both Boeing and from Airbus. And the new ALC, the new leasing company, announced it was buying 51 planes from Airbus.

It has given a boost to both Airbus and Boeing. Both chief executives telling this program tonight that they believe the recovery will be bigger and faster than previously thought.

When I come back in just a moment, a Profitable Moment that will suggest things may be getting better.

But are we back to the bad old days?

QUEST MEANS BUSINESS at Farnborough.

Good evening.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: Tonight's Profitable Moment from the Farnborough Airshow.

It didn't take long after the recession was over and suddenly the airlines are buying planes again. By my reckoning, more than 120 planes were ordered. And both Boeing and Airbus are forecasting record years next and the one after through until the foreseeable future.

Airlines are upgrading planes with new fuel-efficient models. They are expanding. The growth is around the world.

But if we've learned nothing else for the last 24 months, that is, in times of recession, capacity gets cut. There are too many seats chasing too many back sides.

So we have to ask, is it reasonable and responsible for airlines to go on massive spending sprees quite so quickly?

Have they forgotten the damage that's been done over the past couple of years?

Or are we about to enter a new golden age, one noted by the A380, the 787 and beyond?

And that is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS from the Farnborough Airshow for tonight.

I'm Richard Quest.

I thank you for your time and attention.

And whatever you're up to in the hours ahead, I hope it's profitable.

END