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Boeing closing in on Thai deal for 80 Dreamliners - sources

FILE PHOTO: Thai Airways planes sit at Bangkok International Suvarnabhumi Airport

(Reuters) -Boeing is in advanced talks to sell around 80 wide-body 787 Dreamliner jets to Thai Airways after pulling ahead of Airbus in widely watched fleet renewal talks, industry sources said.

Reuters first reported in September that the carrier was boosting its requirements to as many as 80 wide-body jets and 15 smaller ones, sparking a contest between the 787 and A350 for one of the largest recent wide-body orders from Southeast Asia.

Boeing and Airbus declined to comment. Thai Airways did not immediately reply to a request for comment.

The Thai national carrier is looking to make the most of a post-pandemic travel boom by bolstering regional routes, but there have been some concerns over the ability of planemakers Airbus and Boeing to ramp up output to meet surging demand.

Thai Airways began the restructuring of debt worth 400 billion baht ($11.17 billion) in 2021.

(Reporting by Tim Hepher, Chayut Setboonsarng, Valerie Insinna; Editing by Jan Harvey and David Evans)