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Airbus’ First Helicopter FAL in China

Airbus on Wednesday officially opened its first Final Assembly Line (FAL) in China, which will deliver its first H135 twin-engine helicopters to Chinese customers during the second half of 2019.  The Airbus Qingdao H135 FAL is a joint venture between Airbus Helicopters and United General Aviation Company. It follows a cooperation agreement between Airbus Helicopters and China in 2016 for the purchase of 100 H135s. 

It is the first time of Airbus has put final assembly facilities of the H135 helicopter outside Europe. The move marked a new chapter in Sino-European cooperation and Airbus' expanded partnership with China, according to Airbus. 

The first helicopter roll-out is expected to take place in the second half of 2019. 

Main components including the main fuselage, main gearbox kits and rear fuselage will be shipped to Qingdao from Donauwörth, Germany and Albacete, Spain respectively. 

The initial annual production capacity is 18 helicopters. And its capacity could be doubled to meet the growing Chinese demand. 

The H135 light twin-engine helicopter is a popular model from Airbus Helicopters. It can be used for helicopter emergency medical service (HEMS) missions, search and rescue, law enforcement, firefighting and tourism. 

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