Beijing, Sept 19 Airbus today said it plans to tap the potential of the Chinese aviation market by channelising more energy into the country and other emerging economies of the region.
“We are fully confident in the Chinese market, which is set to be the largest civil aviation market in the world,” president of Airbus Commercial Aircraft China, Eric Chen said at an aviation expo here.
The French aircraft manufacturer predicts that the aviation sector in China and other emerging regions will double the pace of mature markets of North America and Western Europe in the next decades.
“Chinese travellers, on an average, took only 0.4 flights in 2016, a quarter of the United States. But China has a population more than four times the latter,” Chen said, pointing to the enormous room for growth.
More than 50 million international trips were made by Chinese citizens last year, up 22.7 per cent from 2015. Chen expects that the high growth rate to continue in the future, the state -run Xinhua news agency reported.
“We are committed to the long-term development of the Chinese aviation industry,” he said, adding that the company has expanded cooperation with Chinese firms in areas including aeronautic manufacturing, air traffic management and research and technology.
Airbus has five joint ventures in China, covering training and support, engineering, final assembly and composite manufacturing. New industrial cooperation worth USD 500 million was reached in 2015 and Airbus believes the figure will hit 1 billion dollars by 2020.
China introduced the first Airbus aircraft in 1985. Now nearly 1,500 are being operated by Chinese airlines, accounting for around half of the total fleet of aircraft over 100 seats in the country.
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