September 19, 2017 / 8:59 AM / a year ago

Airbus expects China airlines to need 60-100 A380s over 5 years

BEIJING, Sept 19 (Reuters) - Airbus SE's China head Eric Chen on Tuesday said the French plane maker expects Chinese airlines to need between 60-100 of its A380 jets over the next five years, amid question marks over future global demand for the superjumbo.

He was speaking at an Airbus event in Beijing.

China is the world's fastest growing aviation market and is a key battleground for Airbus and its main U.S. rival Boeing Co , which recently predicted that the country will spend over $1 trillion on planes over the next 20 years.

In July, Airbus signed an agreement to sell 140 aircraft to China in a deal worth almost $23 billion at list prices during a visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping to Germany.

Europe's largest aerospace company will on Wednesday inaugurate a completion and delivery center for its A330 jet in the northern Chinese city of Tianjin. The facility is Airbus's first for wide-body aircraft outside Europe and is expected to deliver its first A330 aircraft this year. (Reporting by Brenda Goh, writing by Adam Jourdan; Editing by Himani Sarkar)

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