Ukrainian airframer Antonov is aiming to co-operate with Chinese designers to help develop a new aircraft, dubbed the Y-X.
Sources familiar with the programme confirmed that Antonov is hoping to secure a contract on the proposed project.
The Y-X is a larger-capacity type than the Airbus A320 - produced at Tianjin - and the Comac C919, and will have a seating capacity of some 200 passengers. It would operate services between hubs such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou.
Antonov previously assisted with shaping the wing for China's Comac ARJ21 regional jet and played a role in development of Chinese derivatives of the Antonov An-12.
The Ukrainian firm said it earns "several times more" in China than in Russia where it receives royalties from Antonov aircraft sales and services.