On the occasion of the state visit to France of Chinese President Xi Jinping, Airbus Helicopters can now relax a little and celebrate. The helicopter manufacturer has signed an agreement with Avicopter, the helicopter division of the Chinese Avic Group. The result is a joint industrial co-operation for the production of 1,000 EC-175's and 1,000 of its Chinese equivalent, the AC-352. Contract Amount : $ 8 billion.
The rotor-craft will be manufactured both in France and China over the next 20 years. This programme thus ensures the future of this new generation of twin-engined helicopters, and opens doors to the European manufacturer.
Norbert Ducrot - CEO Airbus Helicopters China: interview in the video.
An exceptionally promising market, valued at $ 50 billion. By 2035, China will probably account for more than 5,000 civil helicopters, as against only 350 today. The agreement signed on 26 March will also have positive repercussions for the suppliers of both helicopter manufacturers. The 1,000 aircraft will incorporate equivalent parts produced both in China and Europe.
Unlike the EC-175, assembled in France and equipped with American Pratt & Whitney engines, the Harbin assembled AC-352 will, for example, be provided with French engines from Turbomeca, a subsidiary of the Safran group. This Chinese version of the EC-175 should be certified within three years.