Shenyang county aim­ing to be na­tion’s ‘ light air­craft cap­i­tal’

Gen­eral avi­a­tion-re­lated com­pa­nies are set­ting up shop in aero­nau­tic hub

China Daily (Canada) - - BUSINESS - By HENA andWUYONG in Shenyang

Faku, a county near Shenyang, the cap­i­tal of Liaon­ing prov­ince, has lofty aims. It wants to be China’s “light air cap­i­tal” with an an­nual pro­duc­tion of 1,000 light air­craft within five years, as well as a cen­ter for de­vel­op­ing tech­nol­ogy and talent in the in­dus­try.

Spurred by the bur­geon­ing do­mes­tic pri­vate jet mar­ket, Faku has ex­pe­ri­enced rapid growth at its Faku Gen­eral Avi­a­tion Base, one of the largest in the coun­try.

“A dozen gen­eral avi­a­tion­re­lated re­search and pro­duc­tion in­sti­tutes and com­pa­nies have set up shops in the base and sev­eral other projects are un­der dis­cus­sion,” said Wang Dawei, di­rec­tor of the ad­min­is­tra­tive com­mit­tee of the base.

The an­nual out­put value of the base is ex­pected to reach 100 bil­lion yuan ($16 bil­lion) within five years, he said.

Ge­orge Heintz (China) Air­craft Man­u­fac­tur­ing Co, a branch of the United States­based light air­craft pro­ducer, es­tab­lished a plant at the base with an in­vest­ment of 1.65 bil­lion yuan, Wang said.

Faku is the first base in North­east China that will make su­per-short take­off and land­ing air­craft. The first planes are due on the mar­ket in June, said Wang. A gen­eral avi­a­tion club will be set up at the base to train pi­lots.

Bai Yang, chair­man of Liaon­ing Pa­cific In­dus­trial Co, said his com­pany has in­vested 560 mil­lion yuan at Faku on pro­duc­tion fa­cil­i­ties for light air­craft.

He hopes the first batch of planes of his com­pany will de­but at the end of the year, and he said the com­pany has re­ceived about 900 or­ders.

The main prod­ucts are twoand four-seat light air­craft, and the ma­jor­ity of the cus­tomers are flight en­thu­si­asts, he said.

“China has huge mar­ket de­mand for light air­craft, and the de­vel­op­ment of the air­craft pro­duc­tion in­dus­try will also stim­u­late other in­dus­tries, such as fi­nan­cial ser­vices, civil avi­a­tion and avi­a­tion lo­gis­tics,” Bai said.

“Gen­eral avi­a­tion is the foun­da­tion of a coun­try’s avi­a­tion in­dus­try. As a new, bur­geon­ing in­dus­try in China, it

China has huge mar­ket de­mand for light air­craft, and the de­vel­op­ment of the air­craft pro­duc­tion in­dus­try will also stim­u­late other in­dus­tries, such as fi­nan­cial ser­vices, civil avi­a­tion and avi­a­tion lo­gis­tics.” BAI YANG CHAIR­MAN OF LIAON­ING PA­CIFIC IN­DUS­TRIAL CO

plays an im­por­tant role in con­sol­i­dat­ing na­tional de­fense and pro­mot­ing eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment, but we still lag some dis­tance be­hind many other coun­tries, es­pe­cially in train­ing,” said Liu Yi, China’s longest­serv­ing pi­lot and chief pi­lot at the Liaon­ing Academy of Gen­eral Avi­a­tion.

Bai agreed, say­ing: “The in­dus­try started rel­a­tively late in China. We must speed up the pace of de­vel­op­ing ex­perts an­dat­tach­mor­eim­por­tance to pro­pri­etary in­tel­lec­tual property re­search and de­vel­op­ment, de­sign and pro­duc­tion.”

The Faku Gen­eral Avi­a­tion Base be­came the coun­try’s ex­per­i­men­tal low-al­ti­tude airspace (fly­ing heights lower than 1,000 me­ters) avi­a­tion ser­vice sta­tion in Septem­ber 2010. Faku’s ex­pe­ri­ence will serve as the model for China’s other gen­eral avi­a­tion bases.

The ex­per­i­men­tal base sta­tus gives Faku flex­i­bil­ity.

“Gen­er­ally, a pi­lot must sub­mit low-al­ti­tude flight plans to the avi­a­tion au­thor­i­ties days or even a week ahead of time. But at our base, we only need to re­port plans two hours be­fore a flight,” said Feng Shouquan, Party chief of Faku county. The base has four parts: R&D, man­u­fac­tur­ing, train­ing and leisure tourism, he said.

Faku has been host­ing the Faku Flight In­ter­na­tional Con­fer­ence for the past two years. It’s one of the top three air shows in China. The flight in­ter­na­tional con­fer­ence has in­vited aer­o­batic pi­lots from more than 20 coun­tries in­clud­ing the US, Canada, Bri­tain and South Africa.

The third Faku Flight In­ter­na­tional Con­fer­ence will be held from Aug 27 to 31. Con­tact the writ­ers at hena@chi­nadaily.com.cn and wuyong@ chi­nadaily.com.cn Liu Ce con­trib­uted to the story.

TIAN WEITAO / FOR CHINA DAILY

An in­ter­na­tional light air­craft event takes place in Faku. The county near Shenyang, cap­i­tal of Liaon­ing prov­ince, aims to be China’s “light air cap­i­tal” with an an­nual pro­duc­tion of 1,000 light air­craft within five years, as well as a cen­ter for de­vel­op­ing tech­nol­ogy and talent in the in­dus­try.

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