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Let a hundred airports blossom

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Shenzhen International Airport Termina

Shenzhen International Airport Termina

Private aviation looks to provide an interesting microcosm of the Chinese efforts to transform itself into a modern developed economy practically overnight.  Private jet manufacturers are moving aggressively into the Chinese market.  As of 2010, there were only 130 executive jets registered in China compared to 15,000 in the United States, but manufacturers expect it to provide a big source of revenues in the coming years.  And they expect to sell big planes there, too — Gulfstreams, Globals, Boeing and Airbus business jets, etc.  The Chinese government is also going to play a part, too, with plans to build 45 to 55 new airports in the next few years as well as by loosening restrictions on some airspace (which is tightly controlled by the military).  Obviously, the issue of whether the growth of the Chinese economy is sustainable or a bubble is an open question, with lots of people lining up to make bets on both sides, but it will no doubt be interesting to watch unfold.

Here are some links to stories on the subject:

China’s private jet market takes flight

Business Jets Take off in China

Business aviation industry looks to China

Private jet sales in China cleared for take-off

Interestingly, the stories are not consistent about what the actual numbers of registered jets or projected number of airports to be built are.  This is probably further evidence of what a free-for-all the Chinese market will be over the coming years  — it’s a quickly moving target, and one for which accurate information is hard to come by.  Another note, the number of jets registered in China undoubtedly underestimates the number of jets operating regularly in China, with a large number registered elsewhere to avoid the, ahem, Red tape (sorry).  And, if you thought the title of this post was cheesy, at least I avoided the “taking off” puns — not easy to do.

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Written by mojofinance

June 2, 2011 at 3:39 pm

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