Embraer outlines Harbin plans

London
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Airframer Embraer has added more detail to its plans for Legacy 600 and 650 business jet production at its joint venture Chinese plant in Harbin.

Last week the Brazilian company confirmed speculation that it was to switch the factory from assembly of its ERJ-145 regional aircraft to the two business jet models.

It says that the site - a joint venture with state-owned firm AVIC, called HEAI - is staffed to produce between six and nine aircraft a year, but it could accommodate twice that number if there is sufficient demand.

Embraer declines to specify how many Legacy jets Harbin will need to produce each year to break even.

However, it adds: "The final investment figures for establishing the Legacy 600/650 assembly line at HEAI are still under analysis, but it is not anticipated any significant investment is needed, given that HEAI already has the infrastructure and trained workforce in place. Exact data about break even has not been disclosed by HEAI."

China is seen by the company as a country ripe for sales growth in business aviation, particularly in the large-cabin segment occupied by the two larger Legacy jets.

It forecasts a total business jet market in China of 470 aircraft over the next 10 years.

Meanwhile, Embraer's ultra-large executive jet, the Lineage 1000, has been granted type certification by India's Directorate General of Civil Aviation.

To date, nine Lineage 1000 jets are in operation worldwide.