China will soon establish its first jumbo passenger aircraft company in Shanghai to realize its longtime dream of producing such planes, lawmakers and political advisors said Thursday.
The Shanghai government, aviation companies and some other state-owned enterprises will jointly invest in and establish the jumbo plane company under the guidance of the central government, said Jin Xingming, a deputy to the National People's Congress (NPC), or the parliament, on the sidelines of the ongoing NPC session.
The new company will be responsible for project management, design, test fly, sales and after service, according to Jin, who is also director of the aviation administration of Shanghai.
The China Aviation Industry Corporation I (Avic I) and the China Aviation Industry Corporation II (Avic II), the two largest aircraft producers in the country, were discussing cooperation plans for the jumbo plane project, Jin said.
Feng Peide, a member of the 11th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), the top political advisory body, said it would be a great challenge for the company to build jumbo planes in a relatively short time. "The goal could only be achieved with iron will."
Chinese airlines would need another 1,800 jumbo passenger planes in the next decade, which poses an ideal market for the Shanghai company, said NPC deputy Liu Shaoyong, general manger of China Southern Airlines.
Jumbo passenger planes refer to those with a take-off weight of more than 100 tons, or with more than 150 seats.
Currently, only the United States, Russia, France, Germany, Britain and Spain have the capability to build jumbo aircraft, with Boeing and Airbus taking a lion's share of sales on international markets.
The production of jumbo aircraft is strategically significant for the country, as it would lift the country's competence on the global markets as a slew of technical breakthroughs, especially in engine, materials and electronic equipment, were to be made.