Chicago - President Donald Trump to start a trade war with China. The US government aims to harm China's economic power by imposing punitive tariffs on Chinese merchandises. But they could indirectly affect Boeing too.

Today, Chinese airlines are the largest customers of the US aircraft manufacturer. According to Boeing's market forecast, there is even more potential in the Asian market. The US aircraft manufacturer expects demand for up to 16,050 aircraft in the Asia-Pacific region by 2036. A big part of these customers is the old and new Chinese airlines.

Now it may be that US President Trump slows down its home brand Boeing in the race for Asian customers.

The US government is currently putting together a list of 1,000 Chinese products, which should be punished for import duties in the United States.

China has already announced that it would respond the US with the same measures. If this happens, Boeing could, therefore, fall behind in Asia-Pacific against the European rival Airbus.

Both aircraft manufacturers are fully booked until the early 2020s. Boeing is currently producing 737 equipments in its production center in Zhoushan, China. Airbus has an A320 Final Assembly Line in Tianjin near Beijing, which is already in operation.

Asia is a promising continent in the aviation according to the industry forecasts. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) estimates that by 2036, up to 3.5 billion people in the Asia-Pacific region will choose the airlines to travel, twice as many as in Europe and North America together.