Airbus weighs future of A320 plant in China as competition stirs
|June 15, 2012|
French aircraft manufacturer Airbus is evaluating the future of its single-aisle aircraft assembly plant outside Beijing, as China gears up to compete with a rival plane, Bloomberg reported.
Airbus owns 51% of a venture that began delivering A320s in 2009, while China’s Avic owns the rest, the story said. Airbus plans to build 284 single-aisle jets by June 2016. At present, the plant is turning out more than three planes a month.
Meanwhile, state-controlled Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China aims to have a rival aircraft with 168 seats in service, aimed initially at the domestic market, by the time the last Airbus plane is delivered, the story said.
Though most of Airbus’s single-aisle planes are built in Hamburg, Germany, and Toulouse, France, the Tianjin, China plant assembles only 150-seat A320s, and 125-seat A319s. Airbus also intends to start delivering the A320neo with new engines starting late 2015, said Bloomberg.
Airbus entered the Chinese market in 1994, two decades after The Boeing Co. Both have about equal numbers of planes in service in China today, the story said.