French companies, led by Airbus, have landed $30 billion in deals during President Nicolas Sarkozy’s first visit to Beijing, where he urged the Chinese to accelerate appreciation of the yuan. The aerospace giant’s $17-billion order put Airbus back in the lead over competitor Boeing for orders this year, Bloomberg reports, and Areva’s $11.9-billion contract to build two nuclear reactors was a company record.
“China's spectacular development is a chance for the world,” Sarkozy said today, calling for "harmonious and fair exchange rates." Sarkozy is the first of several world leaders scheduled to visit Beijing in the next month to encourage the Chinese to strengthen the yuan. China’s trade surplus with countries sharing the euro has grown 25% in 2007.