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Boeing’s China Orders Dry Up on US Tensions in Boost for Airbus

  • China historically split jet deals evenly to get lower prices
  • Boeing 737 Max still not flying; China’s C919 is now certified
A Boeing 737 MAX 8 delivered to Air China during a ceremony at the company’s Zhoushan facility in 2018.
A Boeing 737 MAX 8 delivered to Air China during a ceremony at the company’s Zhoushan facility in 2018.Photographer: AFP/Getty Images

China has traditionally split aircraft orders evenly between Airbus SE and Boeing Co. Recently though, there’s been a shift against the American half of the world’s planemaking duopoly. 

Boeing missed out on a 40-plane deal in September, following an even bigger hit in July, when China ordered nearly 300 Airbus aircraft worth about $37 billion at sticker prices. The misses reinforce how simmering US-Sino political tensions continue to complicate the dealmaking landscape for Boeing, which is also still waiting for its 737 Max to fly again in China.