Boeing for Sale

Sell Boeing

When Cessna is the best known manufacturer of smaller aircraft, then Boeing is certainly the direct opposite. Boeing: 707 for China: An historical sale My chief came to me in May 1972 - I was a Boeing engineering graduate - and said, "We put you on a negotiating 707 sales force in China. Only very few US nationals were permitted to travel to China during these years. President Nixon had made his famed journey to China last winters.

The Chinese, after leaving the plane in Beijing (now Beijing), were said to come aboard and ask many about it. So, we think Air Force One was helping the 707 to be sold to China. Well, our crew went to Hong Kong. And the only way to get to China was to get a Chinese travel company to issue a visas.

In order to get to China, you got on a Hong Kong platoon that took you to the frontier. With our baggage we got off the plane and crossed a railway viaduct to China, where another plane was awaiting us - but first we had to go through an examination, as in any nation, and then they brought us into a room and serviced us our meal.

Then we took the Zug to Kanton (today Guangzhou). Accommodation was in the same building as the President Nixon's travel correspondent. It was possible to move around the town - go for a walk, go for a meal - but since so few English speakers came, we had to make plans in advance.

Beijing had very few Americans, so many folks wanted to see us up closer. Discussions were slow because they had nothing to do with Boeing and many issues of procedure. Our talks were also interpreted into Chinese and back again. Some of our hostesses were fluent in English, so with each passing of our times and getting to know each other, the negotiation continued.

We were lucky on our first return journey to Hong Kong to be in the first in-flight video on CAAC, China's then-carrier. You gave everyone a piece of water melon, stapled a blank leaf to the front wall of the compartment and showed an 8mm picture of a beloved cinematic work.

Mitchell in China in 1972.

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