The long-awaited C919 took off its maiden flight on Friday.
From the time the State Council, China’s cabinet, decided to develop the aircraft in 2007 until the inaugural flight, it has taken Commercial Aircraft Corp of China (COMAC) 10 years to make the passenger jet a reality.
It is widely believed that China developed the C919 to crack Airbus and Boeing’s duopoly on the commercial passenger jet market, as the country seeks to become a highflier in the global aviation industry.
Twenty-three foreign and domestic customers have put in 570 orders for the narrow-body passenger jet. These customers include Air China, China Eastern Airlines Corp and China Southern Airlines Co, as well as aircraft leasing companies such as GE Capital Aviation Service and CCB Financial Leasing.