Take-off for China fund

China has made the most significant step yet to fuel the growth of its emerging aviation industry by launching a CNY20 billion (€2.46 billion; $3.25 billion) fund dedicated to the sector.

The Civil Aviation Investment Fund is designed to help finance new airports, aviation economic zones, budget carriers, freight and general aviation-related projects, according to a post on the China Securities Journal’s website.

The initiative is led by Capital Airports Holding, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Civil Aviation Administration of China which controls 20 percent of the fund, but the remainder of the capital is expected to come from private investors. These include HNA Group, parent of Hainan Airlines, as well as several fund managers, according to reports.

The fund was established through the Civil Aviation Investment Management Company, an investment firm in which state-owned enterprises have a 35 percent stake and mixed or private entities hold the remainder.

The move is intended to provide further oomph to China’s booming aviation industry, which official statistics say allowed as many as 754 million people to take to the air last year – up nearly 86 percent from 2008.