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Boeing's 787 production at record high, just misses deadline

The Boeing logo is seen at their headquarters in Chicago, April 24, 2013. REUTERS/Jim Young
The Boeing logo is seen at their headquarters in Chicago, April 24, 2013. REUTERS/Jim Young

By Alwyn Scott

SEATTLE (Reuters) - Boeing Co said on Friday it is producing its 787 Dreamliner at the highest ever rate of 10 per month, a milestone the company had hoped to achieve by the end of 2013.

More details on 787 production are expected when the company releases fourth-quarter results on Wednesday.

Boeing said the jet, a 787-8 and the 155th Dreamliner produced, was completed on Tuesday at the factory in Everett, Washington. The jet entered production on November 14, 2013, and the factory is closed for the week between the Christmas and New Years holidays, suggesting production took about 42 days.

Boeing said it has delivered 115 Dreamliners to 16 customers. The latest jet will go to International Lease Finance Corp and will be operated by Aeromexico .

Boeing's next goals are building 12 787s a month by mid-2016 and 14 a month by the end of the decade. The high-tech carbon-fiber composite jet, which costs $212 million at list price, has garnered 1,030 total orders from 60 customers. But it also has suffered reliability problems and fires caused by batteries and electrical panels.

The new rate of 10 a month is "the highest ever for a twin-aisle airplane," Boeing said, noting that it has ramped up 787 production from five planes a month in November 2012.

The planes also are built in North Charleston, South Carolina.

Earlier this week, Boeing confirmed that it is hiring workers at North Charleston. The hiring is partly aimed at avoiding production problems there.

(Reporting by Alwyn Scott; Editing by Chris Reese and Andrew Hay)

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