Boeing to give Xi a tour of its key airplane factory near Seattle


U.S. aerospace giant Boeing said Wednesday that it will host China’s president, Xi Jinping, next week at its main airplane factory in Washington state.

China’s fast-growing airplane market is one of Boeing’s best customers, taking delivery of some 25 percent of the company’s commercial aircraft production in the year so far, the company said.

Xi will visit Boeing’s Everett factory on Sept. 23 during his visit to the United States. Two days later Xi will be given a full state welcome by President Barack Obama at the White House.

“We’re honored that President Xi will see our factory and meet the Boeing employees who worked to deliver a record 155 airplanes to China last year,” said Boeing chairman Jim McNerney in a statement.

“China’s rapidly growing aviation market plays a crucial role in our current and future success.”

The Chicago-based company projects that over the next 20 years, China will be its largest commercial airplane market with a projected need for 6,330 new airplanes, worth an estimated $950 billion.

The Everett factory builds the 747-8, 767, 777 and 787 Dreamliner.