FARNBOROUGH: Air China picks CFM to power new A320s

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Air China has chosen the CFM International CFM56-5B engine to power the 20 Airbus A320 aircraft ordered earlier this year.

The deal, which includes a long-term maintenance agreement, is valued at about $600 million, says CFM.

Air China, which announced the aircraft purchase in February, will start taking delivery of them from 2011.

"We are very pleased to continue our long relationship with CFM," says the airline's vice-president He Li. "We already have a big CFM56-powered fleet of Airbus and Boeing aircraft, and the operating economics and the outstanding reliability of this engine have been enabling us save our costs and assure our customers of the very highest level of service that we can provide."

The carrier has also signed a rate-per-flight-hour agreement to provide maintenance services for the CFM56 engines in the airline's fleet, says CFM.

Air China has 55 A320s, six A340s and 118 Boeing 737s that are powered by CFM engines.