Airbus begins push for Chinese market

In a first for Airbus, the European aircraft manufacturer opened a final-assembly line in China for its popular A320 passenger plane. Airbus also committed to buy US$1 billion worth of locally made components by 2020, the Guardian reported.

The plant – in Tianjin, in northern coastal China — is designed to establish a foothold in the country, home to the second-largest aviation market after the United States. China’s market is growing by 14.5% a year.

Airbus executives said the company would likely see orders for more than 3,000 new planes over the next 20 years.

The Tianjin plant opens admit fears among unionised European workers that the weakened US dollar will continue to prompt companies such as Airbus to outsource their labour, creating fewer jobs at home. Having captured half the world market, the company plans to expand its presence in India, Russia, Mexico and Morocco.

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