The Franco-Italian manufacturer has reported several positive developments in China for its ATR 42-600 turboprop.
ATR confirmed that the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) has approved the ATR 42-600 type certificate – a move the airframer describes as a “milestone”.
Then, building on this positive progress, ATR also revealed during this week’s Zhuhai Airshow (held between November 8-13) that it received a firm order for a trio of the turboprop type from an undisclosed customer.
Nathalie Tarnaud Laude, ATR’s chief executive officer, said: “Receiving CAAC’s validation of the ATR 42-600 type certificate, along with a firm order, is a major achievement marking the re-introduction of ATR turboprops in China. The ATR 42-600 will undoubtedly prove to be a game-changer…”
Fabrice Vautier, ATR’s senior vice-president commercial, added: “By 2035, we anticipate that over 150 airports will be built in China and turboprops will play a key role in creating a new network of short, thin routes, complementing the high-speed train offering. Our 20-year forecast predicts a need for 280 new turboprops in the region, and ATR is perfectly placed to meet this demand, whilst also contributing to decrease the reliance on public subsidies and delivering reduced CO2 emissions.”
Previously, there’s only been a handful of ATR airframes that have operated in China – this included with Guangzhou-based China Southern Airlines which had flown five, 70-seat ATR 72-500s until it phased these examples out by 2011.