50 SKY SHADES - World aviation news

Airbus Helicopters breaks ground on first helicopter assembly line in China

Download: Printable PDF Date: 27 May 2017 02:41 categories:
Airbus Helicopters breaks ground on first helicopter assembly line in China   - Manufacturer publisher
Tatjana Obrazcova
Country: France Aircraft: Helicopters

Airbus Helicopters is moving forward with the expansion of its global footprint and its strategic partnership with China, as construction is now underway for its H135 Final Assembly Line (FAL) – the first of its kind not only for Airbus Helicopters, but also for the Western helicopter industry in China.

The FAL will be located in Qingdao, Shandong Province, eastern China, and construction is expected to be completed by 2018. A framework agreement signed in June 2016 calls for 100 H135s to be assembled over the next 10 years, and the first aircraft roll-out from Qingdao is planned for mid-2019. The FAL will have a total annual capacity of 18 H135 helicopters, which could be extended for future growth.  

“This ground breaking is a remarkable milestone for Airbus Helicopters’ global footprint and demonstrates our commitment to further enhancing our industrial cooperation with China’s rapidly growing aviation industry,” said Guillaume Faury, CEO of Airbus Helicopters. “We are confident that this project will achieve a win-win solution to fulfil the requirements of local customers while supporting the development of crucial helicopter services for the benefit of Chinese citizens.”

The new facility, located in Jimo Provincial Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone, will be jointly operated by Airbus Helicopters and Qingdao United General Aviation Company Limited (UGAC), a joint venture between China Aviation Supplies Holding Company (CAS) and Qingdao United General Aviation Industrial Development Company Limited (UGA). Following the joint venture agreement signed in April of this year, Airbus Helicopters holds a majority share of 51%.  

“The H135 Final Assembly Line is another strong example of Sino-European cooperation and will play an important role in further promoting the development of China’s general aviation industry,” said Mr. Li Hai, President of CAS. “We believe in this partnership and are looking forward to seeing the first Airbus helicopter assembled in China to fly in the skies.”

The H135 is one of the most popular light twin-engine helicopters in China, mainly operating in helicopter emergency medical services (HEMS), search and rescue, law enforcement, firefighting and tourism. To date, more than 1,200 helicopters of the H135 family are in operation around the globe with more than 4 million flight hours. 

For the first time in 2016, China became Airbus Helicopters’ largest civil market in terms of annual bookings. Given the rapid development of the HEMS, public services and offshore wind industry in the country, a potential demand of 600 light twin-engine helicopters is expected over the next two decades.

Loading comments for Airbus Helicopters breaks ground on first helicopter assembly line in China ...


State of Qatar signs contract for 28 NH90 multirole helicopters

Qatar has signed a contract for the purchase of 28 NH90 military helicopters, during DIMDEX, Qatar’s biennial defence exhibition. The agreement, which includes 16 NH90s in tactical transport (TT...

GE9X engine goes airborne

The GE9XTM engine lifted off on March 13 under wing of GE Aviation’s 747 flying testbed in Victorville, California, for its first flight test. The engine that will power Boeing’s new 77...


Saab successfully completed the first flight of the GlobalEye Airborne Early Warning & Control aircraft in Linköping, Sweden. GlobalEye took off on its maiden flight at 12.52 local time on...

Cessna SkyCourier completes initial wind tunnel testing, final design takes shape

Textron Aviation Inc., announced it has completed initial wind tunnel testing of its new twin-engine Cessna SkyCourier turboprop. Results from comprehensive wind tunnel tests will provide pe...

Boeing Recognized by GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ for 10,000th 737

World's best-selling jetliner reaches new milestone fueled by strong market demand Thousands of Boeing employees gathered at the company's Renton, Wash. factory today to cele...