China Eastern, AVIC I in JV for regional airline

China Eastern Airlines, one of Mainland China's three major air carriers, has agreed to set up a regional airline joint venture with state-run aircraft maker China Aviation Industry Corp I (AVIC I).

According to reports, China Eastern will take a 40 per cent stake in the joint venture, which will have a registered capital of $139 million.

The deal is subject to approval from China's aviation regulator.

The announcement by China Eastern comes just days after the Shanghai-based carrier signed a cooperation agreement with China Southern Airlines, which, according to industry analysts, may hinder an attempt by China National Aviation Holding to take a stake in China Eastern.

Consolidation moves have lately begun to surface among China's other main carriers, such as China Southern and Air China, a unit of China National Aviation Holding.