December 4, 2017 / 9:20 PM / a year ago

Aeromexico eyes Delta's CSeries jet order amid U.S. trade spat -sources

MONTREAL/MEXICO CITY, Dec 4 (Reuters) - Aeromexico has held preliminary talks to take some Bombardier CSeries jets orders from Delta Air Lines Inc, which owns a stake in the Mexican carrier, to avoid possible U.S. trade duties levied on the planes, two sources familiar with the matter said.

Mexico's largest carrier, 49-percent owned by Delta, is considering taking an unknown number of the 75 CSeries planes ordered by Delta in 2016, one of the sources said. Delta's CSeries deliveries, scheduled to begin in spring 2018, face a possible 300 percent U.S. duty stemming from a trade dispute with Boeing Co.

In October, Bombardier gave a controlling stake in the CSeries program to Airbus SE, which would enable assembly in the United States in a move it says will help bypass potential import duties.

Bombardier declined to comment. A spokeswoman for Aeromexico referred questions to Delta. A U.S.-based spokesman for Delta did not comment on any specific deal, but referred to recent remarks by the company's CEO who said the carrier would not pay any duties, but still intended to "take the aircraft." (Reporting by Allison Lampert in Montreal and Christine Murray in Mexico City; Editing by Denny Thomas and Lisa Shumaker)

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