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China to purchase 50 Airbus planes for $3.5 billion

  • China is to buy 50 planes worth $3.5 billion from Europe's Airbus.

    The deal is part of a series of trade agreements signed by German Chancellor Angela Merkel while on a two-day visit to China.

    A deal on Airbus plane assembly in China was also signed.

    This is the first significant deal with China for Airbus following a dispute between the country and the European Union over the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).

    The ETS charges airlines for the carbon they emit and will come into effect from January 1, 2013.

    China and other countries say the system is unfair because it charges airlines for the full journey, not just over European airspace.