Tokyo: A French desire to increase its share in the Japanese aviation market, to levels that are more in line with its global share has received recognition through an official statement issued by both countries after talks between visiting French prime minister Francois Fillon and Japanese premier Yasuo Fukuda.
"France expressed the hope that the performance and competitiveness of European aviation companies will enable Airbus to raise its market share in Japan to a level more in line with its world market share," a joint statement from both the countries said.
The statement, which Fillon dubbed "very important," said Japan welcomed France's desire to strengthen its efforts in the Japanese market. Traditionally, the Japanese civil aviation market has been dominated by US aerospace giant Boeing.
The French want Japanese airlines to consider purchase of more Airbus aircraft. Airbus controls a mere 4 per cent of Japan's market, compared with a global market share that is at par with Boeing.
EADS chief executive, Louis Gallois, is part of Fillon's delegation to Japan.
Interestingly, the meeting of the two leaders comes just two days after Boeing Co announced a third major delay for its new 787 Dreamliner plane, putting back commercial delivery by six months. Launch customer All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines are among a host of global airlines lining up for compensation from Boeing.
Airbus now hopes to interest Japanese customers with its A380 superjumbo as well as the A350XWB. So far, these carriers have been Boeing customers of long standing.