Beijing, Sep 15 (PTI) Airbus Helicopters received a record 49 orders last year in China, making the country its largest civil market in terms of bookings, a senior official of the aviation giant said today.

Ever since its entry into the market of Chinese mainland in 1967, Airbus Helicopters have gained a success in the market with its complete “helicopter family”.

“China is an important and strategic market. We invest big and focus on the country as we foresee its helicopter fleet will continuously grow,” Dr Wolfgang Schoder, executive vice president with Airbus Helicopters told state-run Xinhua news agency.

Airbus Helicopters is the civil market leader with a 40 per cent market share of about 260 helicopters in China.

It foresees a potential demand for 1,000 helicopters over the next decade.

“We provide helicopters and solutions for a wide range of missions, such as emergency medical services (EMS), utility works, public services, as well as offshore oil and gas transportation,” Marie-Agnes Veve, general manager of Airbus Helicopters China said.

“Airbus Helicopters aims to establish a partnership with China, which is our largest market and an important partner in industrial cooperation,” she said.

In May this year, Airbus Helicopters broke ground on its H135 final assembly line (FAL) in east China’s Qingdao city.

It will be the first Western helicopter manufacturer to establish an FAL in China.

“China is facing with surging demands in public service missions, EMS, disaster relief and firefighting. Airbus Helicopters will expand our industrial footprint in multiple locations in China to serve our customers better,” Veve said.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.