IAG International Airlines Group Chief Executive Officer Willie Walsh says the European airline conglomerate will place an order for 20-25 widebody jets at either the end of this year or in the first half of next year.

Speaking to Reuters last week, Walsh said Boeing's B777X was a contender. IAG is also in talks for additional B777-300(ER)s, he said, adding that they could be either new-build or second-hand.

No mention was made of the A380-800 for which British Airways (BA, London Heathrow) has reportedly considered placing a new order. It is recalled that in March this year, Walsh said Airbus (AIB, Toulouse Blagnac) would have to be more "aggressive" in its pricing for IAG before any new purchase was made.

Walsh confirmed British Airways was looking to wet-lease in three A330-200s from Qatar Airways this summer season to cover its Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engine issues. According to Walsh, "five or six" B787s may be grounded this summer given affected aircraft's need to undergo critical maintenance.