The world's largest amphibious aircraft, AG600, domestically developed by China will make its maiden flight in May this year. The aircraft is expected to start its flight from the southern city of Zhuhai, the official Xinhua news agency said on Thursday.
According to Reuters, the aircraft, after completing its first flight over land, will undertake another flight in the second half of 2017 and this time it will be on water.
The state-owned Aviation Industry Corp. of China (AVIC) is the manufacturer of AG600, which is designed to carry out marine rescues and battle forest fires, according to Xinhua. AVIC has spent almost eight years developing the aircraft, which is roughly the size of a Boeing 737, and a maximum flight range of 4.
China has been armed to teeth to combat regional disputes like the South China Sea. In July 2016, an arbitration court ruled that the Asian giant has no historic title over the waters of the South China Sea. However, Beijing dismissed the case as a farce.