Hainan Airlines (HU, Haikou) is the Unidentified Customer behind an order for fifteen A350-900s, Reuters has reported citing industry sources. The order was placed on May 31.
In related news, Reuters says China Eastern Airlines (MU, Shanghai Hongqiao) is in the market for 150 narrowbody jets witn both Airbus (AIB, Toulouse Blagnac) and Boeing (BOE, Chicago O'Hare) products in contention.
According to the report, Airbus could have wrapped up a 180-aircraft order in January this year if only for "unfortunate" comments made by French and German officials concerning the 1937 Nanking Massacre, in which Japanese troops are said to have killed 300,000 Chinese civilians.
Sources familiar with diplomatic developments told Reuters that comments made by the French and German ambassadors to China in a December 2017 edition of The Financial Times wherein they used the massacre as a reference for economic reconciliation with Japan, akin to that between France and Germany post-1945, was received "coolly" in Beijing. The sources said the comments were seen as "unwarranted foreign advice on a painful episode in China’s history".