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Another China-made passenger jet takes off from local center

The latest of China's domestically-made regional passenger jets took off from its assembly center in Shanghai today after being delivered to the Chengdu Airlines.

The new twin-engine ARJ21-700 has 78 seats, including 8 first-class seats that have been set for the aircraft for the first time, its manufacturer, the Commercial Aircraft Corp of China (COMAC), said.

Passengers on board the second ARJ21 aircraft heading to southwestern city of Chengdu includes senior officials with COMAC and the airline.

“COMAC has begun applying for a Production Certificate to the Civil Aviation Administration of China for the mass productions on the aircraft,” said Yu Zemin, deputy general manager with the Shanghai Aircraft Design and Research Institute under COMAC where the aircraft is being assembled.

The institute will assemble another seven ARJ21s this year and will manage to manufacture 25 ARJ21s annually by 2020, Yu said.

The first ARJ21 with a 90-seat all economy configuration that was delivered to Chengdu Airlines on June 28 has been flying safely for over 200 hours on 70 flights mainly between Shanghai and Chengdu.

The aircraft has a load factor of over 90 percent as many passengers want to take the nation’s first homemade regional jet, according to the airline. It has trained eight pilots and 30 flight attendants for the ARJ21.

China began development of the ARJ21 in 2002. It has received over 400 orders around global clients. Airlines in Laos, Myanmar and the Republic of Congo have ordered the jets.


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