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China aims for Int'l aircraft market
Updated: 2005-02-05 15:44

The country's self-designed MA-60 commercial plane went on display at an international gathering in Xi'an.

A new Chinese Modern Ark is flying up into the sky. MA-60, a regional aircraft, is newly developed and manufactured by China's Xi'an Aircraft Industry Company. The company fully owns the Intellectual Property Right of the aircraft. With 60 seats, the regional plane has been proved to be safe, economical and comfortable. China hopes the new type of aircraft can find its place in the international market.

The price of the MA-60 stands only about two thirds of the aircraft of the same kind made by foreign manufactures. And the direct operation cost is 10 to 20 % lower. Zimbabwe is the first to buy the China-made regional aircraft. The country signed the purchase agreement with China National Aero-Tech import & Export Corporation to buy two MA-60s in last November and is confident in the performance and operation of the airplane.

The two MA-60 airplanes are planed to be delivered to Zimbabwe in April. China aims to export 20 MA-60s aircrafts within this year. According to China Aviation Industry Corporation, several countries are now in talks with them to buy the plane. They hope the figure can be increased to 100 by 2008.

Hu Wenming, Vice President of China Aviation Industry Corp, said, "The significance of the export of MA-60 aircraft is not simply about the plane itself. It shows that China's aviation product and standard are accepted by foreign countries. We hope, with the support from the government, our airworthiness regulations can be recognized by more countries. That will help us to expand the overseas market."

Currently, China's airworthiness regulations or standards are still not accepted by western countries like the United States and European Union. This makes it difficult for China to export its aviation products. China's aircraft produces hope the technical barrier can be lifted someday in the future and to have a fair footing with their overseas competitors.

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