Commercial Aircraft Corporation will deliver 100 jetliners

An Honor Guard watches as a plane carrying Hu Jintao, President of the People's Republic of China, taxis at Andrews Air Force Base April 12, 2010 in Maryland.

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STEVE CHIOTAKIS: A Chinese airplane company has announced it'll deliver 100 orders for commercial jetliners. The Commercial Aircraft Corporation is trying to beat out Boeing's popular 737 and the Airbus A320 for the skyrocketing air travel market in China. But can a Chinese company compete with the likes of Boeing and Airbus?

From Shanghai, Marketplace China Bureau Chief Rob Schmitz reports.


ROB SCHMITZ: 700 million people will be flying the friendly skies in China by the end of the decade -- that's ten percent of the world's population. It's a market that'll be worth close to half a trillion U.S. dollars. China's hoping its new C919 aircraft will start cutting into Boeing's 52 percent share of that market. But not if Boeing's Randy Tinseth has anything to do with it.

RANDY TINSETH: To follow the competition is a pathway to mediocrity. We don't want to be mediocre.

For some Chinese products, "mediocre" might be seen as a compliment. And that's why industry experts question the foreign appetite for these new planes. But the C919's manufacturer isn't worried. That's because it's owned by the government, just like most airlines in China. In essence, it'll sell airplanes to itself.

In Shanghai, I'm Rob Schmitz, for Marketplace.

About the author

Rob Schmitz is Marketplace’s China correspondent in Shanghai.

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