French President Emmanuel Macron said China would order 184 Airbus A320 planes as he wrapped up his visit to Beijing during which he called for “balance’’ in trade relations between the two countries.
“The order for the 184 planes from the A320 family will be finalised shortly and has been confirmed by Chinese President Xi Jinping,’’ Macron told newsmen on Wednesday at the end of his three-day visit to China.
Macron said that the president reaffirmed his trust in Airbus, and the fact that China would maintain its orders’ volume in the coming years and maintain the market ratio between Airbus and Boeing.
Macron and Xi on Tuesday signed several Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) for cooperation in areas such as aviation and nuclear energy.
As part of the agreements, Airbus will also increase the production of its A320 model at the Tianjin plant to six planes per month from four aircraft presently.
“This industrial ramp-up targets five aircraft by early 2019 and six per month by early 2020,’’ a statement from the European plane manufacturer said.
The two presidents also agreed to collaborate in the fields of artificial intelligence, climate protection and counterterrorism.
Macron said he would join Xi’s plan to create a trillion-dollar trade and infrastructure network, the One Belt, One Road Initiative across Asia and Europe.
Macron, however, called for “balanced cooperation’’ between the two countries and said he wanted to reduce France’s 36-billion-dollar trade deficit with China.
The Airbus planes are manufactured by France, with production and manufacturing facilities in Germany, Spain, China, the United Kingdom and the U.S.