(Information from a udn news quote in the orders group and this FT article)
China Airlines wanted to order 16 A330s in order to replace the 12 A306 they still have. "Boeing has cut it's price twice for the 777, but the price is
USD$205million higher than A330. Plus the 5-year maintainance and
operating cost, the difference will be USD$350million.
CI claims that the commonality between A330 and A340 is 85%. As a
result, China Airlines was "almost" going to announce A330 order on
The decision was to be made on 10th July and to be announced on the 18th July. However, "US Government has asked for emergency meeting from Taiwan's highest Government authroity, showing "Bush's concern",
and "Taiwan should have FRIENDLY REPLY towards US' help to Taiwan in
the military defence"."
For the full UDN news quote, check the order-group post by jiml1126.
- Same thing as with El Al, A330 is the superior plane and the airline is forced by the US government to buy the inferior plane...