YEKATERINBURG, Sept 19 (Reuters) – Russia’s VSMPO-Avisma , the world’s largest titanium producer, and U.S. planemaker Boeing have launched a new manufacturing unit in Russia’s Urals region of Sverdlovsk, a local governor said on social media on Wednesday.
The joint venture (JV) will process titanium forgings for Boeing civilian aircraft, such as the 737 MAX, 787 and 777Х, and will receive 5.5 billion roubles ($82.3 million) of investment, Evgeny Kuyvashev said.
A Boeing spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. VSMPO-Avisma was not available for comment.
The new unit will operate alongside an existing JV between Boeing and VSMPO-AVISMA which has produced titanium forgings since 2009.
VSMPO-AVISMA supplies Boeing with titanium on long-term contracts. According to the Russian firm, it meets 35 percent of Boeing Commercial Airplanes’ demand for the metal.
In April, after the U.S. imposed a new round of sanctions against Moscow, Russian lawmakers called for an end to supplies of titanium to Boeing as a reciprocal measure. However, the proposal was not accepted by the government.
($1 = 66.8250 roubles) (Reporting by Natalia Shurmina, Additional reporting by Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; Writing by Denis Pinchuk; Editing by Mark Potter)