Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd., Asia’s largest aerospace company, may sign a 64 billion yen (US$644 million) order to supply Vietnam Airlines in its first contract for planes from outside Japan, the Nikkei newspaper said.
The state-owned air carrier is in the final stages of talks to order 20 passenger jets from Mitsubishi Heavy, Nikkei reported, without saying where it obtained the information. The deal may be signed as early as the beginning of April, the paper said.
Mitsubishi Heavy has also drawn up a plan for a factory in Vietnam to make main-wing components for its jet, Nikkei reported.
The Mitsubishi Regional Jet would be the first Japan-made passenger plane since the YS-11 turboprop that started flights in 1962 and ended production in 1973.
Mitsubishi Heavy supplies parts to Boeing Co. and Airbus SAS. The Tokyo-based company plans to start building the jet because it expects as many as 70 orders in total from All Nippon Airways Co. and Japan Airlines Corp., the nation’s two largest carriers, the Nikkei newspaper said March 20.