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China Daily Website

China's AVIC investing big in engine research

Updated: 2012-11-15 10:43
( Xinhua)

ZHUHAI - Aviation Industry Corp of China, the country's largest State-owned aircraft producer, is to invest 10 billion yuan ($1.58 billion) in engine research and development, according to an announcement on Wednesday.

Zhang Jian, vice-president of AVIC Aviation Engine Holding Company Ltd, said the company had launched a special program in engine research and development in order to catch up with advanced international levels.

"We estimate the accumulative investment nationwide in the short run will surpass 100 billion yuan ($15.8 billion)," Zhang revealed at the ongoing China International Aviation & Aerospace Exhibition in Zhuhai, Guangdong province.

Besides State-owned enterprises, many private companies were also willing to join the aviation engine industry, he added.

China's aviation industry has seen rapid development and prompted robust demand for domestically made engines, said Zhang.

With 80,000 staff members, AVIC Aviation Engine Holding Company Ltd produces engines for both military and civilian planes. In 2011, the company's sales revenue hit 40 billion yuan.

Zhang said he expected China's domestically made advanced aviation engines would be put into use by 2025.

"We are open and welcome partners. We are confident we can catch up with others via cooperation," the company's vice president added.

At the exhibition, scheduled to run from Nov 13 to 18, AVIC Aviation Engine Holding Company displayed two types of engines for advanced training planes and small business aircraft.

Lack of investment in research and development of aircraft engines was the top cause for the "heart" problem of China's aviation sector, Zhang said, explaining, "China now is fully capable of changing the situation with its overall growing national strength."

C919, China's first home-grown single-aisle passenger jet, would be powered in the initial stage by advanced LEAP-X1C engines that are installed in Boeing and Airbus aircraft.

The C919 jumbo jet, with some 156-190 seats on board, is expected to take flight in 2014, with its aircraft deliveries scheduled as of 2016.

Chinese airlines will order 4,273 large passenger aircraft in the next 20 years, according to a report released in Zhuhai on Tuesday by a Chinese airplane manufacturer.

The Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China, Ltd said in its latest forecast that China is expected to order 4,960 aircraft, including both small and large passenger aircraft worth more than $563 billion, from 2012 to 2031.