China to Secure Major Stake in Aircraft Leasing Firm

“The recent announcement that American International Group (AIG) will sell up to 90 percent of its airplane leasing unit to an investor in China raises serious economic and security questions,” said IAM President Tom Buffenbarger.  “The prospect of large amounts of aircraft maintenance work being funneled to China as a result of this deal is an issue that should concern aircraft and aerospace suppliers and vendors throughout North America.”

Although little is known about the AIG deal, China’s aerospace industry currently produces a significant number of aerospace parts in addition to a regional aircraft (ARJ-21) and a large commercial aircraft.
 
“In addition to concern over the increased use of Chinese-made aerospace parts and components in aircraft serviced by the leasing unit, such deals can facilitate the expansion of an industry that aims to compete with U.S. companies and ultimately dominate the global market.”

Buffenbarger warns that U.S. aerospace manufacturers, maintenance operators and U.S. vendors and suppliers should be very wary of such a deal. “The time to ask these serious questions is now,” he said.