This is news. Bloomberg covers the story. China apparently may need 1,790 planes new planes by 2023 Airbus estimate, and it makes sense to, well, make them in China.
Toulouse-based Airbus, which is trailing Boeing in new orders this year, may win an order for as many as 150 planes valued at $9 billion, said people familiar with the negotiations yesterday. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao may announce at least part of the order today at a Paris press conference with his French counterpart Dominique de Villepin, said the people, who declined to be named.
The European planemaker said yesterday after Wen’s visit that it might open a factory in China for assembling A320 planes. Air China and the country’s six airline groups may need 1,790 planes valued at $230 billion by 2023, Airbus estimates. Boeing on Nov. 20 won an order from China for 70 planes worth $4 billion.
Airbus spokeswoman Barbara Kracht declined to comment yesterday on the Chinese order. Ren Houxiang, director of the Civil Aviation Administration of China in Beijing, declined to comment Dec. 2 on the likelihood of China signing an order with Airbus. Repeated calls to the Chinese embassy yesterday weren’t answered.
More from Reuters here.