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Southwest Aviation Corporation. China 1936-1938

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Southwest Aviation Corporation.

Lennart Andersson

The two largest airline companies in China during the 1930s are fairly well known: the China National Aviation Corporation (CNAC) and the Eurasia Aviation Corporation (Eurasia). The former was Chinese-American and the latter Chinese-German and both employed foreign pilots. The third of the pre-war airline companies, the Southwest Aviation Corporation (SWAC), was one hundred percent Chinese, employed only Chinese personnel and had no foreign part-owners.

SWAC operated mainly with small cabin aircraft that seated just three or four passengers. It's existence relied heavily on subsidies from the local Kwangtung and Kwangsi governments and it would probably not have been allowed to operate the routes in south China if these provinces had not been strong enough to resist, at least to a certain level, the political and military pressure from the Central Government in Nanking. The Japanese attack on China in 1937 changed the game plan completely and finally forced SWAC out of business. This is the company's history.