China's Southwest Aluminium (SWA) has won a contract to manufacture and supply aluminium plate for use in Airbus's single-aisle and widebody aircraft.

Airbus and its parent company EADS signed the deal with SWA in Beijing on 16 February and held a ceremony yesterday to celebrate the contract.

SWA will initially supply aluminium for use in Airbus's narrowbody and widebody aircraft, but EADS says the contract could be extended to other programmes in the future.

The deal moves EADS and Airbus "a further step forward to sourcing new qualified suppliers in emerging regions", says director of EADS's China sourcing office Antoine Gaulger in a statement.

Airbus has sealed several manufacturing deals with Chinese companies in the past, including selecting China as a partner in its A350 XWB programme. Under the latter contract, 5% of the A350's airframe will be manufactured in China.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news