China interested in active cooperation with Ukraine in sphere of military aircraft modernization
Ukraine and China are planning to intensify cooperation in the sphere of the repair and modernization of military aircraft. According to the press service of the state-run company Ukrspecexport, issues related to the development of bilateral cooperation in the sphere were discussed by the sides during China International Aviation & Aerospace Exhibition (namely Airshow China 2012) in Zhuhai. "Ukraine held negotiations with a number of Chinese companies regarding cooperation in the sphere of repairs of engines and gear systems for military helicopters, as well as the fulfillment of contracts on supplies of Il-78 aircraft and the training of the contractors' employees in the repair and use of the aircraft. The sides also discussed cooperation in the sphere of supplies of spare parts for aircraft and repairs of aircraft engines for China," reads the statement. "China is a leader among the countries to which Ukraine exports products of the national defense industry. In 2011 some 43% of Ukrainian products were delivered to China," Ukrspecexport said. According to the organizers of Airshow China 2012, which will take place in Zhuhai until November 18, this year's exhibition is the biggest one over its history since 1996. Around 650 companies from 39 countries took part in the event. Some 90 aircraft were exhibited at the show this year. In 2002 the Industrial Policy Ministry of Ukraine and the Chinese Commission for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (COSTIND) signed a protocol on cooperation in the sphere of the aircraft industry. Currently Antonov State Enterprise is considering possibilities for cooperation with China's aircraft industry. In particular, this concerns the AVIC I project initiated by China for the creation of a new Chinese transport aircraft. Ivchenko-Progress and Motor Sich are working with Chinese partners on the creation of a new Chinese L-15 trainer airplanes. At the same time, experts say that Ukraine could benefit from China's experience in the sphere of the modernization of heavy fighters.