It is an astonishing number for a big business that will last over the next 20 years if everything will go according to plan. Airbus Helicopters and Avicopter (AVIC) of China signed an agreement on 26 March 2014 for the production of a 1,000 (!) EC175 / AC352 medium twin-engine helicopters.
When it comes to these kind of deals, it means a prestigious setting. So both Chinese president Xi Jinping and French president François Hollande where present at the Elysée Palace in Paris when the deal was put into ink. Airbus Helicopters and AVIC will jointly further develop the EC175 / AC352 types.
While development work has been equally shared between Airbus Helicopters and Avicopter for the EC175 / AC352 project, production is likewise shared, combining the capabilities of both companies. Coming from a common platform, two different rotorcraft are being built: the AC352, assembled and supported from China by Avicopter, mainly for the Chinese market; and the EC175, assembled and supported by Airbus Helicopters from Marignane, France, for the rest of the world. Initial deliveries to its first three EC175 customers are planned by Airbus Helicopters later in 2014.
France and China launched their cooperation on EC175 / AC352 in 2005.
Source: Airbus Helicopters