Under the agreement, Chinese and U.S. regulators achieved “full, reciprocal recognition” of each other’s civil aviation products, including airworthiness certification, according to the statement by CAAC. This agreement covers the airworthiness examination and approval of design standards, production oversight, export airworthiness, technical support and other areas of cooperation, the statement says.
What does the agreement allow? This agreement would help China export domestically developed aircraft like the C919 and the ARJ-21. FAA and EASA certification are the ideal imprimatur for COMAC. The ARJ-21, for example, has not looked like a candidate for FAA certification. This has limited its export potential, even at irresistible pricing.
The C919 is a different story because if (or when) it gets FAA certification via CAAC, then the potential market disruption could be significant. Such a competitor will be of grave concern to Airbus and Boeing. China is the great fear in the big duopoly – many people have said Boeing’s worst fear was the C Series ending up in Chinese hands.