Leading European aircraft maker Airbus signed an agreement with the Industrial & Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) yesterday to provide financing to supply 70 A320 jets to mainland purchasers, the Financial Times reported. The initial aircraft from the Tianjin production line, the first Airbus production line outside of Europe, are due to be delivered today, and the plant will produce four aircraft per month by the end of 2011. The first Tianjin-produced A320s are to be delivered to Sichuan Airlines. Airbus said the agreement with ICBC covered both aircraft financing and leasing, including management activities, the structuring of operating and finance lease transactions and portfolio management, and the remarketing of aircraft when they return from lease. The total value of ICBC support would exceed US$3 billion.
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