Boeing's ( BA) chief executive said the company should achieve its airplane delivery target for this year, and he reitereated the forecast for 2004, but Phil Condit cautioned that a big unknown was how long SARS might keep people from traveling. According to the Associated Press, Condit said Boeing's delivery target of about 280 jets this year "looks very firm," while characterizing the state of the industry as the "worst downturn since airplanes existed." Boeing still expects to deliver between 275 and 300 commercial jets in 2004, the AP reported, but Condit said the "only remaining significant unknown" was the impact SARS might have on travel. The last time Boeing's planned deliveries were this low was 1996, when the company shipped 271 planes, according to the AP. Reports also indicated that Condit said the company is near the end of its series of layoffs that began after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The company has said it would cut 35,000 jobs by the end of this year. Shares of Boeing were up 19 cents, to $30.09 in recent New York Stock Exchange trading.