Beijing (AFP) Sept 23, 2009
The designer of China's largest home-produced commercial jet expects strong interest from domestic and overseas buyers when it starts taking orders next year, state media reported Wednesday.
Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC), designer of the C919 jet, is in talks with potential customers and hopes to get about 90 orders in the first half of 2010, the Beijing Morning Post said, citing a COMAC official.
"We will cap the number of initial orders because generally the first customers can get price discounts and other favourable conditions," said Chen Jin, marketing manager for COMAC, according to the paper.
COMAC has opened a tendering process for foreign companies wanting to supply the jet's engine, and COMAC will pick a supplier at the end of the year, the paper said.
CFM, a joint venture between General Electric and Snecma of France, had submitted a bid, it added.
The jet, which seats between 168 and 190 passengers, is due to make its maiden flight in 2014 and will be delivered to clients in 2016, COMAC officials said while unveiling a model of the plane at a Hong Kong air show this month.
The single-aisle aircraft is part of China's long-term plan to break the duopoly of Airbus and Boeing in the production of large commercial aircraft.
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