Airbus secures multi-billion dollar jet order from China


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Airbus has secured an order from China for 300 jets, in a deal estimated to be worth tens of billions of dollars.

An agreement to purchase A320 and A350 XWB aircraft was signed during a visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping to Paris.

The order is part of a package of deals signed during Mr Xi’s visit to Europe.

It comes as rival Boeing has grounded all of its 737 Max jets after two fatal crashes.

Airbus said in a statement it signed an agreement with China Aviation Supplies Holding Company covering the purchase by Chinese airlines of Airbus aircraft including 290 A320 planes, and ten A350 XWB jets.

The deal is worth an estimated 30bn euros ($34bn; £26bn), according to reports.

“We are honoured to support the growth of China’s civil aviation with our leading aircraft families – single-aisle and wide-bodies,” Airbus Commercial Aircraft President Guillaume Faury said in a statement.

Mr Faury is due to become Airbus’s new chief executive in April.

“Our expanding footprint in China demonstrate our lasting confidence in the Chinese market and our long-term commitment to China and our partners.”

The deal will likely be a blow for Boeing, under pressure after two fatal crashes involving its 737 Max 8 jets in five months.

Many countries banned the aircraft from their airspace after an Ethiopian Airlines crash earlier this month. Boeing later grounded its 737 Max fleet as investigations into the cause of the disaster continue.

Mr Xi kicked off his European tour last week in Italy, where it became the first developed economy to sign up to China’s global Belt and Road Initiative.

But other European countries and the United States have expressed concern at China’s growing influence.


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