Xi'an Aircraft International Corp., a listed unit of China Aviation Industry Corp., yesterday said it had received 15 domestic orders for its MA (Modern Ark) regional jet.
Xi'an has signed a firm agreement with China Joy Air, the country's largest regional airline, for three MA-60 jets and was in the initial phases of signing up the company for 10 MA-600 jets, Xi'an Aircraft said in a statement to Shenzhen Stock Exchange yesterday.
Xi'an Aircraft said the Civil Aviation Flight University of China placed the remaining two orders, which were for MA-600 jets.
China Joy Air, a venture jointly owned by China Aviation Industry Corp. I and China Eastern Airlines, mainly flies domestically produced jets.
This is the first time the airline has expanded its fleet since it was established in March.
It has also shown an interest in the China-made commercial jet model ARJ21, manufactured by the Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China.
Shanghai Securities News cited Li Fenghua, president of China Eastern Airlines, saying that Joy Air may buy up to 50 MA jets in the future, in order to expand its operations in China's northwest.
Li said the three MA-60s would be delivered in December. The MA-600 jets will be delivered in batches starting from 2010.
Xi'an Aircraft, which also supplies components to aircraft manufacturers Boeing and Airbus, has received 156 orders at home and abroad for its MA family of aircraft. Thirty-four jets have been delivered to customers.
The MA-60 was exported to Zimbabwe in 2004, the first time Chinese-designed jets were sold abroad.
(Shanghai Daily November 6, 2008)