The Air Current

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What will it take to create an export market for Chinese made airliners?

As part China’s One Belt, One Road initiative (BRI), President Xi Jinping unveiled a plan to African leaders gathered in Beijing for the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation on Sept. 3 for investment of an additional $60 billion for projects across the continent. The loans and grants will cover everything from infrastructure development, security arrangements, natural disaster assistance and food security programs.

Chinese development projects on the continent anything but new and investments widespread across a range of industries. The funding has, at times, brought controversy and sharply increased debt to worrying levels, according to the International Monetary Fund. But as part of China’s involvement on the continent, the country’s Exim bank, airport development organizations and state-owned construction companies have fanned out across the continent, pumping billions of grants and loans to modernize aviation infrastructure.

Jon Ostrower is Editor-in-chief of The Air Current. Prior to launching TAC in June 2018, Ostrower served as Aviation Editor for CNN Worldwide, guiding the network's global coverage of the business and operations of flying. Ostrower joined CNN in 2016 following four and half years at the Wall Street Journal. Based first in Chicago and then in Washington, D.C. he covered Boeing, aviation safety and the business of global aerospace. Before that, Ostrower was editor of the award-winning FlightBlogger for Flightglobal and Flight International Magazine covering the development of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and other new aircraft programs from 2007 to 2012. Ostrower, a Boston native, graduated from The George Washington University's School of Media and Public Affairs with a bachelor's degree in Political Communication. He is based in Seattle.

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