( dpa )- Airbus SAS plans to begin production in China at its first factory outside Europe in August, a spokesman said Friday.
The European airplane maker plans to deliver the first plane made at the plant in Tianjin, about 100 kilometres south-east of Beijing, in the first half of 2009, and by 2011, it should be producing four planes a month.
Informed sources said the plant dedication would take place on September 10, but the spokesman in Beijing would not confirm the date.
Construction on the plant began in May as Airbus sought a presence in the world's second-largest aviation market after the United States.
The plant to build 320s, Airbus' most popular plane, is a joint venture by Airbus and a Chinese consortium. Airbus has a 51-per-cent stake in the venture, which also involves the Tianjin Free Trade Zone and the two Chinese airplane makers China Aviation Industry Corp AVIC I and AVIC II.