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Mitsubishi mulling freezing passenger Jet project

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23 Oct 2020 03:10:05 GMT9
23 Oct 2020 03:10:05 GMT9

TOKYO: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. is considering freezing its project to develop and commercialize Japan’s first homegrown small passenger jet, informed sources said Thursday.

The project to develop the Mitsubishi SpaceJet has faced a delay. In addition, aircraft demand is unlikely to recover anytime soon as the coronavirus pandemic has reduced air passenger traffic.

On Oct. 30, the company is expected to announce its approach to the project.

In 2008, Mitsubishi Heavy decided to develop a small passenger jet, then called the Mitsubishi Regional Jet, aiming to deliver its first model, a 90-seater jet, to All Nippon Airways in 2013.

But the company has since postponed the first delivery six times due to factors including a lack of experience. Most recently in February, it was postponed to at least fiscal 2021.

The company has halved the cost of development for fiscal 2020, which ends in March next year, to some 60 billion yen. It has suspended a plan to develop a 70-seater jet for supply to the United States.

Mitsubishi Aircraft Corp., a Mitsubishi Heavy unit tasked with developing the SpaceJet, has halved its workforce.

JIJI Press

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