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November 3, 2009

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Eaton eyes piece of C919 plane project

DIVERSIFIED industrial manufacturer Eaton Corp yesterday launched its Asia-Pacific headquarters in Shanghai to integrate regional operations and expand its presence in China as it seeks to take part in the country's jumbo jet project.

The US$35 million building covers 10,000 square meters in the International Business Park in Changning District.

"We have been negotiating with Commercial Aircraft Corp of China for more than one year about supplying our fuel and hydraulics systems for the jumbo jet project," said Craig Arnold, vice chairman of United States-based Eaton Corp.

China is on track to produce its 150-seat commercial jet, the C919, as it attempts to reduce its reliance on foreign jet makers such as Boeing and Airbus. An initial design of the jet has been completed and the aircraft is set to make its maiden flight in 2014 and is expected to be delivered to customers by 2016. Commercial Aircraft, which opened a market research center in the city yesterday, has consulted 31 potential foreign suppliers and 51 domestic firms about their possible participation in the C919 project.

Eaton also said yesterday that it is cooperating with the SAIC Group to supply 150 to 200 hybrid power buses for the 2010 World Expo to be held in Shanghai.


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