Macron says China will buy 184 Airbus jets

Jan 13, 2018, 06:49
Macron says China will buy 184 Airbus jets

France and China have promoted themselves as leaders in fighting global warming following Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreements.

The two sides signed deals in the nuclear, aviation and other key sectors on the second day of Macron's first state visit to China.

The French president, who won the election a year ago in a landslide victory against National Front candidate Marine Le Pen, said France is in a position to assist China expand its network to Africa.

On Tuesday, Airbus, based in Toulouse, signed a provisional deal to increase the output of A320s at its China assembly plant in Tianjin from four to six planes per month by 2020.

After touring Beijing's sprawling Forbidden City, Macron met with Chinese business leaders and held talks with top officials at the imposing Great Hall of the People.

Ninety percent of China's beef imports come now from Brazil, Uruguay, Australia and New Zealand.

"The human society is facing many challenges", Xi said at the joint press conference after their meeting.

British Prime Minister Theresa May, who herself has a China trip set for the end of January, continues to face questions about Brexit and her own leadership; Germany's Angela Merkel is struggling to form a coalition; and the U.S.is facing political turmoil under Donald Trump's administration.

Macron, however, called for "balanced cooperation" between the two countries and said he wanted to reduce France's 36-billion-dollar trade deficit with China.

JD.com agreed to sell 2 billion euros worth of French products - such as Remy Martin cognac or Evian water - on its website over the next two years.

While no deal has been finalised over the current official visit, Macron said China had assured him it would respect market-share parity between Airbus and Boeing.

New orders for Airbus jetliners have historically featured during such visits by French leaders.

"This also allows us to better understand one of the themes of the 19th Congress raised by President Xi Jinping", Macron said.

Not pulling punches in his characterization of controversial Chinese investments, Le Maire was quoted by Reuters as saying, "we accept long-term investments but not looting".

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