Hong Kong Dragon Airlines has been forced to delay the delivery of two Airbus aircraft following the slide in passenger demand caused by the Sars outbreak. 'As a result of the current decline in demand for travel, Dragonair is delaying the arrival of two A321s, originally planned for delivery in June and August, until the end of the year,' the airline said. The world's No 2 aeroplane-maker, Airbus Industrie, declined to say yesterday whether other carriers in the region were following Dragonair's lead. The Sars outbreak in Hong Kong and China has hit the business and leisure travel sectors, particularly affecting Dragonair's extensive mainland network. Passenger services have already been slashed across the region. China Eastern Airlines company secretary Luo Zhuping said yesterday that the carrier was talking to Boeing and Airbus about delaying the delivery of 12 aircraft. 'We are still talking to the manufacturers and no conclusion has been reached,' Mr Luo said. A spokesman for the Taiwan-based China Airlines said the airline might consider adjusting the delivery dates for four aircraft this year. 'Our initial plan was to take three B747-400 freighters and one A340 passenger aircraft this year,' he said. 'I am not sure whether the fleet planning team will make any changes but the market sentiment is not favourable.' Cathay Pacific Airways this week said it had discussed the possibility of delaying some new aircraft deliveries, but had since decided to receive the planes on schedule. The airline has six passenger aircraft - one A340-600, three A330-300s and two B777-300s - set for delivery this year. Taiwan's second carrier, Eva Air, will also receive two A330-200s this year as planned.