Cessna, AVIC to work together on Chinese-built business jets

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Cessna and Chinese airframer AVIC have signed two strategic agreements to develop jointly general and business aviation aircraft in China.

The agreements will lead to a range of business jets, utility single-engine turboprops and single-engine piston aircraft being manufactured and certificated in China.

The first agreement is intended to lead to the formation of joint ventures in the general aviation segment, "including the establishment of an aircraft service network in China", Cessna says in a statement.

The second is a specific co-operation agreement between Cessna, AVIC and the Chengdu government to enter into negotiations to establish a joint venture to produce mid-size Cessna business jet models, as well as a potential new product for the business jet market.

Scott Ernest, Cessna's president and chief executive, says: "We are extremely pleased to be entering into these strategic agreements. China's market potential is tremendous and therefore represents an exciting opportunity for Cessna. China recognises general aviation offers the foundation to support its national air transportation needs for the future. These agreements will help take the industry to the next level."

The two partners hope to create a number of joint ventures within the next 12 months.