Airbus unveiled its first global aircraft recycling project, named Airbus Lifecycle Services Centre (ALSC), in Chengdu, a major aviation hub in Southwest China, on Wednesday.
"The opening of ALSC will become a new highlight in deepening cooperation between China and Europe," said George Xu, Airbus executive vice president and Airbus China CEO.
In 2023, two international airports in the city recorded more than 74.92 million passenger trips and a total cargo and mail throughput of 771,000 tons, according to the Sichuan Province Airport Group Co Ltd. China will become the world's largest aviation services market by 2042, with its market value climbing to $54.1 billion, Airbus China forecast in December 2023.
China is Boeing's second-largest market and the largest for its European rival Airbus in terms of the number of aircraft delivered, according to the two jet makers.
Meanwhile, Airbus said China is expected to become the largest commercial aircraft services market globally by 2042, exceeding North America and Europe, and it will continue to increase investments in the country.
European aircraft manufacturer Airbus anticipates delivering its new model A330neo to a Chinese airline company in the first half of 2025 after going through certification.
The A330 series of Airbus accounts for more than half of the wide-body aircraft in operation in China, Li Min, senior marketing director of Airbus China, recently told media in Guangzhou, Guangdong province.
Meanwhile, European aircraft manufacturer Airbus said talent acquisition is becoming one of its priorities alongside business development and steady growth in China.
Airbus signed partnership agreements with the Sichuan University Pittsburgh Institute and the Civil Aviation University of China in November to impart relevant competencies and skills to young talent.
The plane maker said such agreements are part of its campus programs in China, which intend to attract younger generations to Airbus' local talent pool and contribute to sustainable development of the domestic civil aviation industry.
The agreements aim to foster long-term collaboration in areas such as the development of strategic competencies, technical and soft skills, the design of common educational programs and cooperation on innovative projects, Airbus said.
"In addition to attracting experienced candidates, the need to recruit young talent is increasingly urgent for a more sustainable development of Airbus in China.
Developing a talent pipeline is vital to our success," said Ning Fei, vice-president of human resources and workplace of Airbus China.
France-headquartered aircraft manufacturer Airbus officially established a wholly-owned subsidiary - Satair (Chengdu) Co Ltd in Shuangliu district in Chengdu, capital of Southwest China's Sichuan province on Wednesday.
This marks another giant step forward on Airbus' map of lifecycle services, following the completion of its aircraft lifecycle service center in Chengdu on Sep 28.
Richard Stoddart, CEO of Satair, said Satair Chengdu, whose business scope encompasses the purchase of pre-owned aircraft and the management and trade of available used aircraft materials, is an important business line of the Airbus Lifecycle Services Center project.
George Xu, executive vice-president of Airbus and CEO of Airbus China, said Airbus Lifecycle Services Center in Chengdu offers industry leading one-stop sustainable solutions by recycling middle life and aged aircraft, and it's testimony to Airbus' commitment to China as a long-term reliable partner.
"Thanks to our cooperation in Chengdu, Airbus completes our industrial value chain in China from design, parts manufacturing, final assembly of aircraft and technical support service for in-service fleet to end-of-life service," he said.
To meet the growing aviation marketing demand, Iraqi Airways is continuing to expand and renew its fleet to further meet the growth of the business and leisure travel markets in the region, signing an order agreement with Boeing and Airbus for 31 aircraft, including 16 Boeing 737MAXs, 10 Boeing 787s and 5 Airbus A220s.
C919 is the nation's first self-developed trunk liner adopting international airworthiness standards and owning independent intellectual property rights, comparable to the Airbus A320 and the Boeing B737 series.
Airbus on Thursday broke ground on its second final assembly line in North China's Tianjin municipality as the European aircraft manufacturer seeks expansion on the Chinese market.
The groundbreaking marks another milestone after Airbus signed an agreement on the project with Tianjin Free Trade Zone Investment Company Ltd and Aviation Industry Corporation of China Ltd in April 2023.
The expansion project is planned to enter into service at the end of 2025, Airbus said in a statement.
France-headquartered aircraft manufacturer Airbus said China has the huge capability of producing sustainable aviation fuels, and it will continue to strengthen cooperation with Chinese suppliers to promote the use of SAF to contribute to the sustainable growth of the aviation industry.
Airbus said nearly all the airlines in China have expressed an interest in using SAF and the plane maker plans to further promote its use in the delivery flights of aircraft at its final assembly line in Tianjin.
"We are all committed to achieving net zero for the industry, and regulatory policy will play a key role because it will help stimulate the production of SAF and its demand," said Julie Kitcher, executive vice-president of Airbus, who visited China this week for the first time since 2019 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Airbus is making a significant investment of around 2 billion euros ($2.11 billion) annually in research and development, which is mainly targeted at sustainable aviation.
Meanwhile, Airbus' research center in Suzhou Industrial Park in Suzhou, Jiangsu province, opened in April, which focuses on the research of the infrastructure for its futuristic hydrogen-powered aircraft.
Airbus has more than 200 suppliers in China, including 17 tier-one suppliers.
- Airbus Helicopters signed a Letter of Intent for strategic cooperation with Wanjiang Financial Leasing Co Ltd during the 6th China Helicopter Exposition in North China's Tianjin municipality on Thursday.
Airbus Helicopters has been a key partner in the Chinese helicopter sector for over 50 years.
Currently, there are more than 300 Airbus helicopters flying in China, serving more than 90 customers.
Its aviation finance business has put a total of 200 general aviation aircraft on the market since its establishment in 2015, including 55 helicopters, 25 of which are Airbus helicopters.
The AC352, China's first 7-metric-ton-class helicopter, was co-developed by AVIC and Airbus Helicopters.
- Airbus has delivered more than 630 A320 family aircraft assembled at its Final Assembly Line Asia (FALA) in North China's Tianjin municipality over the past 15 years, according to the European aircraft manufacturer.
This final assembly line, inaugurated in September 2008, is Airbus' first final assembly line located outside of Europe.
In November 2021, Airbus revealed its plans to expand the capabilities of FALA in Tianjin to accommodate A321 production, responding to rising market demand for the aircraft type.
In March 2023, Airbus delivered the first A321neo aircraft assembled at FALA in Tianjin to China's Juneyao Air.
In April, Airbus entered into an agreement with its Chinese partners to enhance the final assembly capacity for its A320 family aircraft with the addition of a second final assembly line planned at the same site.
By then, Airbus will have 10 A320 family aircraft final assembly lines worldwide, including two in Tianjin, according to Airbus.
Alberto Gutierrez, chief operating officer of Airbus, said that Airbus will continue to invest in China and cooperation will be deepened, noting that the company is confident in maintaining its advantages in China in the future.
The C919 is China's first self-developed trunk liner with international airworthiness standards and owning independent intellectual property rights, comparable to the Airbus A320 and Boeing B737 series.
Aircraft manufacturer vows to increase investment to expand supply chainEuropean aircraft manufacturer Airbus said it would continue to increase investment in China, its largest single-country market, and expand its supply chain in the country by cooperating with more Chinese suppliers, including startups, driven by China's strong demand for new aircraft and rapid recovery of the air travel market.
This year marks the 15th anniversary of the inauguration of Airbus' final assembly facility in Tianjin.
Opened in 2008, the facility serves as the first Airbus commercial aircraft assembly line outside of Europe.
Airbus plans to further expand its A320 fleet's final assembly capacity in Tianjin with a second line currently under construction.
The new facility is expected to be put into operation and begin delivery by the end of 2025, and Airbus is highly confident it will complete it on time.
Alberto Gutierrez, chief operating officer of Airbus, said during his first visit to China this week in Tianjin that he was impressed with the country's development and infrastructure and Airbus will continue to invest in China.
Meanwhile, George Xu, Airbus executive vice-president and Airbus China CEO, added that China's economic growth relies on globalization and connectivity.
China aims to achieve high-quality development by focusing on innovation and decarbonization, and Airbus can play a crucial role in supporting such a trend, he said.
Currently, Airbus operates four A320 final assembly sites worldwide, located in Hamburg, Germany; Toulouse, France; Mobile, Alabama, the United States; and Tianjin, China.
Airbus manages more than 13,000 suppliers globally.
In China, Airbus has some 200 suppliers.
In 2020, the total value of Airbus' supply chain in China reached $1 billion.
Airbus said it is considering the potential to extend cooperation with more Chinese startups as its suppliers, and it would like to recommend those Chinese companies to its research center in Suzhou Industrial Park in Jiangsu province.
It recently announced an order for an additional 32 Airbus single-aisle aircraft, including A321neo and A320neo, which are expected to join the fleet by 2029.
Chen listened to information about the business operations, demands and suggestions of six foreign enterprises, including Airbus and Volkswagen, on their key investment projects in Tianjin during the symposium on Thursday.
European aircraft manufacturer Airbus has again raised its forecast for aircraft demand in China, saying that over the next 20 years, Chinese carriers are expected to acquire 9,440 new airplanes to meet expanding commercial air travel demand.
In the next two decades, China's demand will account for 23 percent of total new airplanes required globally, reflecting the country's market rebound and further evolution of its fleets following the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Airbus' latest forecast released on Thursday.
By 2042, the Asian market, particularly China, India and the Middle East, will show a strong demand for air travel," said Francois Cabaret, head of global market forecast at Airbus.
Airbus also noted that there is no direct competition between high-speed trains and the air travel market.
By 2042, the global fleet size of cargo aircraft in service is likely to reach 3,230, including 920 newly manufactured planes and 1,590 freighters that are converted from passenger aircraft, Airbus projected.
Airbus is in discussions with logistics, air cargo and e-commerce companies for potential cooperation.
We are highly optimistic about the growth potential of China's airfreight market," said Liu Li, senior vice-president of Airbus and head of commercial for Airbus China.
Philippine low-cost carrier considers buying more aircraft from Airbus unitCebu Pacific Air, a Philippine low-cost carrier, received on Thursday its first A320neo aircraft assembled at Airbus' final assembly line in Tianjin.
Earlier this week, Hungarian airline Wizz Air, the largest Central and Eastern European low-cost carrier, accepted delivery of its first A321neo aircraft, also assembled at Airbus' Tianjin facility.
Opened in 2008, the Airbus facility in Tianjin serves as the plane maker's first commercial aircraft assembly line outside of Europe.
Airbus China plans to expand its recruitment of new energy talents to support its green transformation and sustainable development, said the company's CEO George Xu on Wednesday.
Hungarian airline Wizz Air, the largest Central and Eastern European low-cost carrier, took delivery of its first A321neo aircraft assembled at Airbus' final assembly line in Tianjin on Tuesday.
The delivery flight was powered by a 10 percent blend of sustainable aviation fuel, Airbus said.
Opened in 2008, the facility in Tianjin serves as the first Airbus commercial aircraft assembly line outside of Europe.
The first A321neo assembled at Airbus Tianjin was delivered to Chinese private carrier Juneyao Air in March.
In its inaugural flight from Beijing Daxing to London, an Airbus A350 widebody aircraft, carried more than 240 passengers.
- Airbus, the European aircraft manufacturer, on Wednesday set up an aircraft lifecycle service center in the southwestern Chinese city of Chengdu.
As Airbus' first aircraft lifecycle service center outside Europe, it will provide parking, storage, maintenance, upgrading, modification, dismantling and recycling services for all types of aircraft, said Airbus.
The center is a collaboration between Airbus, TARMAC Aerosave and Aerotropolis Xingcheng Group, which is based in Chengdu, the capital city of Sichuan province.
The establishment of the center marks the business scope of Airbus in China through the whole chain of aviation industry.
Airbus considers China as one of the most "strategic markets" and hailed the resilience of China's supply chains amid the COVID-19 pandemic, said Airbus China CEO George Xu in an exclusive interview with China Daily during a conference in Beijing on Tuesday.
China, accounting for 20 percent of Airbus' global deliveries, has promising market forecasts for the next 20 years, said Xu on the topic of improving the stability of industrial and supply chains at the first International Cooperation and Development Conference for Young Entrepreneurs.
Combining a positive market and advantages in China, Airbus plans to develop its strengths in China for China and the rest of the world by collaborating with local partners.
The move comes as the strong rebound of the aviation market both in China and the world after the pandemic and also demonstrates Airbus' confidence in developing local solutions with Chinese partners to address the strategic market in China, he addedSeeking local-to-local solutions helps to reduce risks as early as possible, Xu said at the conference, and Airbus, therefore, is expected to continue making vertical integration after adding the second final assembly line.
Airbus has committed to playing a leading role in the decarbonization of the aviation industry by developing a next-generation hydrogen aircraft in 2035.
European aircraft manufacturer Airbus said it would focus on the research of its futuristic hydrogen-powered aircraft at its new research center in the Suzhou Industrial Park in Suzhou, Jiangsu province, which opened on Friday.
Airbus said the center would take advantage of the skilled aviation and hydrogen technologies in the Yangtze River Delta region, and gain from its proximity to the region's strong aeronautical and hydrogen supply chain.
Airbus aims to gather top talents and promote the development of the aerospace industry in the region.
Airbus is working with partners, and China in particular, to nurture technologies, discover various resources, introduce alternative fuels, and develop the hydrogen ecosystem as we work toward sustainable aviation," said Sabine Klauke, chief technical officer of Airbus.
The opening of the new facility further indicates Airbus' long-term commitment to develop and invest in China, its largest market globally, after it signed agreements with Chinese partners in early April to expand the Airbus A320 Family final assembly capacity with a second assembly line in Tianjin.
Meanwhile, in early April, Airbus signed an agreement with China National Aviation Fuel Group to strengthen Chinese-European cooperation on the production of sustainable aviation fuels.
The new agreement aims to optimize the SAF supply chain by diversifying sources and enhancing SAF production toward a goal of using 10 percent of SAF by 2030 globally, Airbus said.
"Airbus is not a fuel producer, but we are working with our partners in the aviation, logistics and energy industries to support this development.
By 2035, Airbus aims to bring the world's first zero-emission commercial aircraft to the market.
This is consistent with China's goal to peak its carbon dioxide emissions by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2060, Airbus said.
The first Airbus A321neo aircraft assembled in China rolled off the assembly line in the northern Chinese city of Tianjin for delivery on March 24.
AIRBUS' FIRST FINAL ASSEMBLY LINE OUTSIDE EUROPEIn September 2022, the first shipment of the main parts of A321neo aircraft arrived at Airbus' final assembly line in Tianjin, which is the European aircraft manufacturer's first final assembly line outside Europe.
In November, the A321neo model was officially put into production, which showed that the Tianjin final assembly line was capable of producing all models of Airbus' flagship A320 airliner series.
"The A321 is currently one of the most popular aircraft in the A320 family," said George Xu, CEO of Airbus China.
"Headquartered in the southern French city of Toulouse, Airbus offers a variety of airliner models to its customers.
Like other Airbus models, the parts of an A321neo aircraft, ranging from rivets to bolts, engines to seats, are manufactured by subcontractors around the globe.
Once the manufacture of all the parts is completed, they will be transported to various Airbus factories for assembly: the French plant in Saint-Nazaire is responsible for assembling the nose of the aircraft and the forward fuselage; the central wing box will be assembled in Nantes; engine mounts in Toulouse; the central and rear parts of the fuselage in Hamburg, Germany; the vertical and horizontal empennage in the German city of Stade and the Spanish city of Getafe, respectively.
Cooperation between China and Airbus dates back to the 1980s.