Since entering the Chinese market in the mid 1980s, Airbus has seen the country's aviation sector take off. After years of double digit growth in the country, Guillaume Faury, Global CEO of Airbus, is still confident that the growth momentum will keep up in the next decade.
On Chinese market
"It doesn't peak when it comes to aviation. The demand is strong, even now, only a fraction of Chinese people travel by plane." Faury laid out the reasoning to CGTN.
"We are far from peak, there are potentials of traveling inside China, but also outside China. Fares are getting accessible for Chinese, and there is a growing middle class here," he said.
If there is a speed cap to that growth, Faury said it's not demand but the ability to meet that demand. "But at the same time the ability to supply is getting up to speed," Faury added.
There are other areas in the Chinese market that are fast picking up speed.
"We see China relaxing control on low altitude flying, this is where we see great potential," Faury said. While the number of aircraft and services on that stratum is small compared to more mature markets like the US and Europe, "as the control relaxes, we anticipate fast development in areas like in emergency transport, VIP transport and others," he continued.
On trade war
"Trade wars are lose-lose games," Faury said. "Not for airbus, it's for everybody, lose-lose means there is no winner in trade war."
He said trade wars stall development, block competition, "and competition makes everyone better."
He said that while the recent trade uncertainties have not directly affected Airbus, the company is nevertheless closely monitoring the depth of the trade rows, as well as advocating for parties to go back to the negotiating table.
"We are for open trade and fair play. This is also the direction taken by China and Europe."
For a company that aims to "connect," Faury said the second China International Import Expo (CIIE) gave Airbus the connections it looked for.
"It's the second year, we are seeing more participation, more international presence, the business environment is friendly for us, it's definitely a positive experience for us to be in Shanghai."