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European Airbus flies ahead of US Boeing with record 2013 sales

Airbus said that in 2013 it took 1,503 net orders, allowing for cancellations. This compares with 1,355 orders taken by Boeing. Total orders taken by Airbus is a record for the whole industry.

Airbus also said that at the end of last year it had record orders to build 5,559 aircraft, equivalent to eight years of production. Results published by Boeing on 6 January showed that the US firm had a total order book for 5,080 aircraft.

However, last year Airbus delivered 626 planes, far behind Boeing which delivered 648 aircraft.
In 2012, Boeing had beaten Airbus in terms of orders and deliveries.

The chief executive of Airbus, Fabrice Bregier, said that the company was considering increasing production of its best-selling plane, the Airbus A320 which is popular with low-cost airlines, to satisfy global demand for medium-range aircraft.

'If the market remains positive, if the customer needs more aircraft, I think we would be silly not to ramp up again,' he told journalists shortly before the company published its annual results.

Airbus is producing 42 A320 aircraft per month and had said that it did not want to increase this rate of production until it had converted to producing the latest, more fuel-efficient version, the A320neo.

'We believe there is a potential to go higher than (the) rate 42. There is an upside and we are studying it. Some upside that we will confirm in the coming months,' Bregier said.

'I would like to ramp up but be in a position to remain steady,' he said. After 2018, 'when we have moved to the neo aircraft, we know that we will ramp up again, whatever we do now or not, we know that we will ramp up again.'

Airbus won orders for 377 A320 planes last year and has taken more than 1,000 orders since it announced at the end of 2010 the launch of the A320neo.

America plays its dirty ‘unfree trade’ tricks against Ranbaxy

New Delhi: Drug major Ranbaxy Laboratories on Monday said that the US health regulator has raised concerns over manufacturing practices at its Toansa plant in Punjab.

The US Food and Drug Administration's observations regarding the manufacturing practices in the company's plant in Punjab comes after the recent inspection of the facility by the health regulator.

'On Saturday, 11 January, 2014, Ranbaxy received the form 483 with certain observations as a result of the recent US FDA inspection at its active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) plant at Toansa, Punjab, India,' the company said in a filing to the BSE. The US FDA has imposed ban on import of medicines manufactured at Ranbaxy's India-based factories into the US, the world's biggest drug market. 'The company is assessing the observations, and will respond to the USFDA in accordance with the agency's procedure to resolve the concerns at the earliest,' Ranbaxy Laboratories said.

The drug maker continues to improve its systems and processes, and remains fully committed to upholding the highest standards that patients, prescribers, regulators and all other stakeholders expect from the company, it added. Last year in September, the USFDA had issued an import alert on drugs produced by Ranbaxy Laboratories at its Mohali plant in Punjab, for violation of current good manufacturing practices. In May last year, Ranbaxy had pleaded guilty to 'felony charges' relating to manufacture and distribution of certain 'adulterated' drugs made at two units in India to the US authorities and had agreed to pay $500 million as penalty.

Japan’s Suntory to buy US maker of Marker’s Mark, Jim Beam drinks

New Delhi: US spirits maker  Beam, which has Jim Beam and Marker's Mark alcohol brands to its name, agreed to be acquired by Japan's Suntory Holdings Ltd for $13.62 billion. Suntory has a portfolio of spirits, with whiskies including Yamazaki and Hakushu as well as Midori liqueur.

It already distributes Beam's products in Japan. Beam distributes Suntory's products in Singapore and other Asian markets. Suntory President and Chairman Nobutada Saji said in a statement that the acquisition will help Suntory further its global growth.
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