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EADS’ Eurocopter and China Aim for Assembly Facility in Tianjin

European Aeronautic, Defence & Space Co.’s helicopter unit said it’s exploring plans for a joint production line of civil choppers in China.

The plan, which is still preliminary, aims to create a production facility in Tianjin, where Airbus SAS already makes planes with a Chinese partner, according to a statement today.

The market for civil helicopters as well as private business jets in China is beginning to open up as the country relaxes rules allowing private flights. Air space in China is all controlled by the military though efforts to promote civil aviation have led to an easing of regulation.

“The new Chinese industrial center will mark an important step for Eurocopter’s global strategy of being in close proximity to customers within key markets, while also offering tailored, flexible solutions adapted to local market requirements,” Eurocopter Chief Executive Officer Lutz Bertling said in a statement.

Bertling is traveling with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on diplomatic visit to Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao.

To contact the reporter on this story: Andrea Rothman in Toulouse at aerothman@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Benedikt Kammel at bkammel@bloomberg.net

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