Global Chinese Checkers with Sale of Aircraft as the Goal

Chinese Checkers and players
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CAAC still has the Max 8 grounded in China

Commerce says Boeing blocked there

COMAC C919 still faces tough certification tests

All Global Certification Authorities playing Chinese Checkers

The international trade wires have been awash with stories about the Civil Aviation Authority of China 中国民用航空局 (, its delay in the reauthorization of the Boeing Max 8 and its expectations as to the certification of its COMAC C919Here is some of the traffic:

C919 and B737 Max 8

U.S. Says China Blocking Boeing Purchases Worth ‘Tens of Billions

Boeing 737 MAX test flight for China’s regulator a success

Chinese Government Impedes Boeing Airplane Sales, US Commerce Secretary Says

Boeing’s big China problem


China’s COMAC C919 certification to be delayed?


COMAC’s 1st C919 Set To Be Delivered By The End Of 2021

China’s foreign ministry denies government blocking entry of BTS goods


Airbus talking to China’s aviation regulator about A220 certification

Airbus Is Confident COMAC’s C919 Can Compete Against The A320neo

Global perspective



Since March 2019, the global aviation certification network has lost some of its reliability; the terms of the Bilateral Aviation Safety Agreements (BASA) were not and since then, have not been strictly adhered. As a  consequence all pending Type Certification applications are test cases.

The Chinese government’s C919 request for airworthiness determinations from its fellow sovereigns is now a marble on a multi-sided Chinese Checkers board[1]. The current  aviation game, as depicted graphically in the post’s cover, has at least 6 players:


        1. Boeing
        2. FAA
        3. DoC/USTR
        4. China CAAC & COMAC
        5. France
        6. Copycats—Russia, India, Japan and ???


Numbers 1,2 and 3 (Boeing, FAA, Commerce and US Trade Representative) should be a single player, but US commercial, safety, diplomatic, trade and security can be divergent in their goalsCAAC headquarters though they are all American. The transparency of the US Government also weakens their strategy implementation.

The country with the most congruent perspective is China. The certification authority and the commercial entity are controlled by the central government.

The French side closely coordinates, or as per a normal socialist government, dictates its private sector sales efforts. There is also close cooperation with EASA. Evidence of the Airbus expertise in Chinese Checkers is the company’s inexplicably positive comment about the C919’s competitiveness with the Toulouse’s A320neo. The move clearly is intended to influence the Chinese, the world’s largest market.

French Prime Minister and Airbus CEO





The CC board has two more points on the star. The global aerospace market  is so attractive that Russia, India, Japan and other countries are developing their own commercial aircraft. Which of these new entrants play and how well they move their pieces will be seen on  the Chinese Checkers table?


It will be interesting to see what strategy works for what country or company or both!!!

[1] It is a strategy board game of German origin which can be played by two, three, four, or six people, playing individually or with partners. The game is a modern and simplified variation of the game Halma. A basic strategy is to create or find the longest hopping path that leads closest to home, or immediately into it. (Multiple-jump moves are obviously faster to advance pieces than step-by-step moves.) Since either player can make use of any hopping ‘ladder’ or ‘chain’ created, a more advanced strategy involves hindering an opposing player in addition to helping oneself make jumps across the board. Of equal importance are the players’ strategies for emptying and filling their starting and home corners. Games between top players are rarely decided by more than a couple of moves.

Chinese Checker move

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