But now Hong Kong aviation services specialist and consultant Asian Sky Grou. p has counted them all. Applying the expertise it has gained with its regular business jet and helicopter surveys that cover Asia as well as China, and insights from sister companies that include Avion Pacific, which buys and sells helicopters and GA aircraft in China and throughout the region, it has compiled its first “China GA Report.”

It’s available by download at www.asianskygroup.com/media-reports.

The survey is remarkable in that it doesn’t just list aircraft totals by manufacturer and type (business jets, helicopters, turbine utility and piston-engine aircraft), it also tells you where they are and who operates them. It delves into China’s policy to boost GA by elevating it to a separate industry, and detailing how GA will play a major role in economic development. The report tells how there will be more than 700 GA airports by 2020, and how development of aerospace industrial parks around them could lead to a production overcapacity that will, ironically, stifle growth.

And it explains why the much-talked-about pilot shortage will hit GA harder than the airlines (who wants a low-paying job as a GA flight instructor?), perhaps adding another damper to the GA boom that has been expected to happen for the past 20 years.

Yet the boom has begun, Asian Sky says. GA in China has had annual growth in the number of aircraft of over 10% since 2010, and the growth exceeded 20% in 2013. And last year wasn’t bad, with a more modest growth of 15%.

As of 2016 year-end there were 2,595 aircraft in the mainland China GA fleet. Fixed-wing totaled 1,809, including 329 business jets, 252 turboprop and 1,228 piston and electric aircraft. The rotorcraft fleet is 57% turbine with 514 helicopters, followed by 363 piston-engine helicopters and 20 gyroplanes.

Asian Sky also has in-depth reports available on China’s aviation infrastructure and the pilot training industry in Asia-Pacific.