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Rolls Royce, China Eastern sign engine deal

BEIJING, Nov 9 – Rolls-Royce and China Eastern Airlines Corp on Tuesday signed a 1.2-billion-dollar deal in Beijing under which the British group will provide jet engines to power 16 Airbus A330 aircraft.

The deal, signed on the first day of a visit to China by British Prime Minister David Cameron, also covers a long-term service agreement for the Trent 700 engines.

Cameron — plus 43 bosses from major British companies and four ministers in Britain\’s largest-ever delegation to China — has said he wants to take his country\’s ties with the world\’s second-biggest economy "to a new level".

The British premier, on his first official visit to China, aims to secure billions of dollars worth of deals as his government battles to find new sources of growth for his country\’s fragile economy.

Cameron, who oversaw the signing of the Rolls-Royce deal after talks with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, hopes to double trade in goods and services between Britain and China by 2015 from last year\’s 51.8 billion dollars.

The deal between the companies includes a "carbon partnership" that aims to reduce emissions by 190,000 tonnes in its first year, Rolls-Royce said in a statement.

China Eastern will bring its new A330s into service from 2011, according to the companies.

It previously received Trent 500 engines for its Airbus A340 aircraft in 2003.

Rolls-Royce shares have taken a battering in recent days after a mid-air Trent 900 engine blow-out forced a Qantas Airbus A380 superjumbo to make an emergency landing last week in Singapore.

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The company is still investigating the incident.

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