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China to be world's largest aviation market: Honeywell president

12/29/2016| 4:42:21 PM|

China is expected to become the world's largest aviation market in the next 20 years, said Steven Lien, president of Honeywell Aerospace Asia-Pacific, in an interview with China Daily.

"According to the 13th Five-Year Plan, about 50 new major airports will be established to accommodate the region's growth in air travel. We estimate that we will see 6%-7% annual growth in passenger traffic, airplane acquisitions and total flying hours in the next two decades," said Lien.

Excerpts from the interview:

How do you view China's rapid economic growth and its recent slowdown?

China is expected to become the world's largest aviation market in the next 20 years. According to the State Council of China, China is expected to build more than 500 general aviation airports across the country and own more than 5,000 all-purpose aircrafts by 2020.

In addition, China is becoming a key supplier of aircraft and component systems. The government is acting as an avid supporter of this growth, emphasizing the importance of the aerospace industry for the development and growth of the country.

What are your business strategies as you re-adjust to the new Chinese economic realities such as the New Normal?

Under New Normal, we observed that trends such as the emergence of low-cost carriers, increased international routes and demand for new aircraft all point to continued growth. In response, Honeywell has centered itself as a key partner, supplier and innovator for the Chinese aviation industry.

Honeywell has established relationships with some of China's key aviation players, including the Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC), Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) and the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).

How do you assess the prospects of your business in China in conjunction with the Chinese market and economy?

Honeywell is proud of our contributions to the thriving Chinese aviation industry over the past several years. Working closely with our world-class customers, partners and vendors, we are involved in many of the country's most critical aviation, aircraft and airport initiatives.

We will continue to support airlines and other operators with maintenance solutions, upgrades and retrofit solutions to make their fleets safer, more efficient and more comfortable.

How do you see aviation industry in China in 2017 and the next few years?

The growth of China's aviation industry has been so consistent and robust that people sometimes forget just how far it has come in a relatively short time. China has become a major global player in aviation for the foreseeable future.

For example, expansion is expected to continue in the airline sector, driven by continued rapid growth of the economy and fast urbanization of the population. The government has a strong commitment to supporting aviation infrastructure and new aerospace technology.

According to the 13th Five-Year Plan, about 50 new major airports will be established to accommodate the region's growth in air travel. We estimate that we will see six to seven percent annual growth in passenger traffic, airplane acquisitions and total flying hours in the next two decades.

Do you plan to add to your R&D efforts in China?

In fact, Honeywell has plans to expand our APAC regional headquarters and research and development facilities in Shanghai's Zhangjiang High-Tech Park. With this new investment in China, we will accommodate continued and consistent business development across the country.

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TAGS: Honeywell | China | airlines | airports
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