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article imageBoeing invests $33 million in joint venture with Chinese firm

By Ken Hanly     Sep 27, 2017 in Business
Zhoushan - The giant US aircraft manufacturing company Boeing and the Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China(COMAC) signed a joint venture agreement and also unveiled Boeing's first overseas completion and delivery center.
The facility will be in Zhoushan in the east of China in Zhejiang province. The joint venture will have registered capital of $55 million with Boeing having a 60 percent share through its investment of $33 million. COMAC has a 40 percent with an investment of $22 million. The project will oversee Boeing's new 737 completion plant in China. Construction began in early May and will include a delivery center that will be owned by Boeing. The facility will be able to carry out tasks such as cabin installation, painting, flight testing and maintenance.
Boeing Corp. is a U.S.-based global corporation that designs, manufactures, and sells airplanes, rotorcraft, rockets, and satellites throughout the world. It also leases items and provides product support. It is the second largest defense contractor in the world in 2015. By dollar value it is the largest US exporter. Its stock is part of the Dow Jones average. In 2016 Boeing recorded sales of $94.6 billion.
COMAC is a Chinese state-owned aerospace manufacturer that was established in 2008 and is headquartered in Pudong, Shanghai. COMAC designs and constructs large passenger aircraft that have a capacity of over 150 passengers. China is attempting to lessen reliance on Boeing and France's Airbus. The C919 had its maiden flight in 2017. It can seat up to 168 passengers and is meant to compete with the single aisle jet market that is now dominated by the Airbus A320 and Boeing's 737.
COMAC said that completion tasks with would be carried out by both COMAC and Boeing employees. COMAC said the project would broaden cooperation between it and international players and would optimize the environment for the growth of the civil aircraft industry in China. President of COMAC, He Dongfeng said:: "Zhoushan and Seattle are located at the two sides of the Pacific Ocean. In the past, most people living in Seattle didn't know about Zhoushan, but now they come to work here. Our completion center has linked us together." Boeing expects the first stage of construction at the site to be finished and will go into operation by May 2018. Boeing hopes to deliver the first single-aisle B737 MAX plane by the end of 2018 to a domestic Chinese airline.
Boeing expects to deliver all the aircraft finished at Zhoushan to be delivered to Chinese customers. The maximum annual production will be 100 planes per year.[url= t=_blank] Lin Zhijie, an aviation industry analyst said: "One-fifth of narrow-body aircraft in the world are delivered to China. It is a huge market Boeing hopes to seize." France's Airbus already has a final assembly plant at Tianjin established in 2008. Airbus has boosted its market share in China from 34 to 47 since it was first started. Boeing is playing catch up. As Lin put it: "Boeing is now making more efforts by establishing its first overseas completion and delivery center in Zhoushan, in order to seize the strong market potential in China and strengthen its cooperation with Chinese aviation industry players."
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