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Bombardier 'hopeful' of CSeries customer in China this year

Bombardier is growing ever more confident that it could score its first Chinese customer for the CSeries aircraft in the coming months.

The Canadian airframer has "a handful of campaigns well advanced in China", Bombardier Aerospace president and chief operating officer Guy Hachey said today during an earnings conference call.

He says Bombardier is "hopeful" of announcing a CSeries deal in China this year. "Stay tuned," adds the Bombardier executive.

In China, AVIC's Shenyang Aircraft supplies the fuselage for Bombardier's Q400 turboprop and for the 110/130-seat CSeries. This is "creating more of a critical mass for us, as well as a significant presence" in the region, says Hachey.

Bombardier has already gained some traction in China. On the business jet side, the manufacturer has made "significant penetration" with over 15 aircraft sales in China. On the commercial side, Bombardier is largely relying on the CSeries which is "very well suited" for the Chinese market, says Hachey.

Bombardier is also considering opening an aircraft assembly line in China to help increase sales in the country's growing air transport market.

To date, Bombardier has secured 90 firm orders and 90 options for the CSeries. It is targeting a service-entry of 2013 for the Pratt & Whitney geared turbofan-powered aircraft.

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