China has signed orders to purchase 140 Airbus planes for $17 billion, its state aircraft buying agency said on Friday.
The deal was agreed during German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s visit to Beijing, the China Aviation Supplies (CAS) confirmed in a statement.
China’s “Big Three” state airlines in July pledged to buy a total of 292 Airbus jets, making it the biggest order at the time by Chinese carriers since the Covid-19 pandemic – and a breakthrough for Europe as Boeing remains partially frozen out of China.
Boeing suggested it may have to make do without Chinese deliveries for some time amid the zero Covid policy and US-Chinese tensions.
Boeing, which has started reselling planes originally built for China, told investors on Wednesday it could reach its goals without the Chinese market, which usually represents a quarter of Western deliveries.
Friday’s purchase agreement includes 132 of the European planemaker’s A320 series planes and eight A350 planes, the company said.
- Reuters, with additional editing from Alfie Habershon