French aerospace group Safran, in partnership with US conglomerate General Electric, has won a huge order for engines for a new Chinese made passenger jet.
The contract is worth an initial 3.5 billion euros each for Safran and GE, but could bring in three times that over the next 30 years.
The engines are for the new C919 plane, which will be the largest passenger jet to be produced in China.
It is expected to go into service in 2016 with the engines made at a specially built facility in China.
The contract was announced as part of a trade trip to China headed by French Prime Minister Francois Fillon.
It included the launch of a nuclear power joint venture between China Guangdong Nuclear Power Corporation and Electricite de France.
Fillon spoke of the importance of such agreements, and told reporters: “Nuclear cooperation is rooted in both our countries’ intention to value technological innovation and energy independence.”
He added: “These agreements are also proof of the solid relations between China and France.”
In all 12 trade deals were signed, marking an improvement in relations between Beijing and Paris.
They were soured a year ago when French President Nicolas Sarkozy met with the Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama.