China is moving ahead in the field of Civil Aviation. This field has so far been dominated by the United States and the European Consortium Airbus. China by test flying the C-919 passenger jetliner has served notice that it is planning to be a force to reckoned with in the field of civil aviation. The American manufacturing company Boeing will now have a competitor in China. The C-919 can carry 168 passengers and is modeled on the Boeing 737. It has a range of 4500 km.The plane took off from Pudong International Airport in Shanghai, before a cheering crowd of Chinese citizens.

The Civil Aviation market is close to $2 trillion. China wants a share of this. Aviation analyst Tom Ballantyne believes that this is a "big moment" for China. America and the west would have to take notice of this development in the field of Chinese Civil Aviation

The C-119

The C -919 will rival the Airbus and Boeing but before foreign Airlines buy this liner, it will have to prove itself. Boeing And Airbus have been in the field of civil aviation for decades. To match them the Chinese wiĺ have to work hard and it won't be easy. The plane has received over 500 orders so far but they are mostly from Chinese companies and firms. The plus point of the plane is its price which is $50 million. This is half the list price of comparative Boeing aircraft.

The crucial issue will be how economic the plane is to operate and how much fuel it consumes per hour of flying time. The Russian airliners lost out to their American counterparts because they were fuel guzzlers. The Tupelov and Illusion aircraft flopped in the world civil market because they were costly to operate.

Chinese challenge

China, however, is developing its industry at a very fast pace in both the military and civil field. The Chinese have also launched their first indigenous aircraft carrier and more are in the pipeline. The new carrier is a pygmy in front of the Nimitz class of carriers but never the less is a significant step forward.

The C- 919 is the first civil airliner manufactured by China. There is a chance that the Chinese may have copied the Boeing design. Further details of the plane are not available. For China to sell the plane in the international market, it will have to ensure the plane is a viable commercial proposition. As things stand the Chinese plane is a long way of being a competitor to either Boeing or Airbus. Safety features of the plane will also have a bearing on its marketability. It is not yet known how safe the plane is to operate and what are the safety features incorporated in the aircraft. Despite this, the first Flight of the C-119 is a feather in the cap of Chinese aviation and shows that China is taking giant steps to match the United States.

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