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China, Italy to join hands in producing helicopters
Updated: 2004-11-02 22:48

China will produce the world's fastest light double-engine helicopters, according to an agreement signed Tuesday between China and Italy in Zhuhai, a coastal city in south China's Guangdong Province.

The A109E helicopter is also reportedly the most powerful double-engine helicopter in resisting wind.

Under the accord between Jiangxi Changhe Aviation Industry Co., Ltd. based in this capital city of east China's Jiangxi Province, and the AGUSTA from Italy, the world's leading helicopter supplier pledged to transfer all of the production activities for A109E to China eventually.

 The cooperation between the two will have two modes, outsourcing and joint-venture operation, according to an official with the Jiangxi company.

 After the planned joint-venture company is established, it will take over all of the marketing of its copters in China, the official said. The joint venture is expected to start delivering A109E helicopters to the Chinese market in 2005, the official added.

 The coming joint venture will also act as a service center for A109E copters, and all of the other products of AGUSTA in China, the official said.

 Prior to the agreement inked Tuesday, the Jiangxi company clinched a contract with the AUGSTA in July this year and vowed to supply body parts of 290 A109E copters for the Italian firm.

 Put on the market in 1997, A109E is one of the state-of-the-art light double-engine helicopters in the world. With a remarkable performance, particularly against high temperature and high land conditions, the helicopter will be suitable to fly most parts of China, experts said.

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