French President Emmanuel Macron launches Paris Air Show with airborne entrance

PARIS—The French president descended from the skies in a European military plane and Airbus and Boeing raced to impress with big plane orders as the Paris Air Show got underway Monday.French President Emmanuel Macron landed at the Bourget airfield in an Airbus A400-M military transport plane to launch the aviation showcase, where the latest passenger jets will vie for attention with an F-35 warplane, drones and other high-tech hardware.Macron, trying to raise his international profile, appears to have chosen the A400-M to give a boost of confidence to the long-troubled European military transporter project.The Airbus A400M carrying French President Emmanuel Macron lands at Le Bourget airport for the opening of the International Paris Air Show.  (ERIC PIERMONT / AFP / GETTY IMAGES)  French fighter jets swooped overhead as the biennial aviation and defence industry kicked off.Article Continued BelowThe industry is eager to show off its wares at the Paris show after a string of public relations embarrassments recently, from the United Airlines’ passenger getting dragged off a flight to British Airways’ massive outage.Airbus announced the first big deal of the week: a firm order for 100 single-aisle A320neo planes by General Electric’s aircraft leasing arm, GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS).The A320neo range of jets, designed to use less fuel than the original and widely-used A320s, have proven popular and are competing with Boeing’s 737 Max series in the short to mid-range market.An Airbus A350-1000 XWB performs a flight display on the opening day of the International Paris Air Show.  (ERIC PIERMONT / AFP / GETTY IMAGES)  Boeing announced plans Monday for a new, longer version of its 737 Max, the Max-10, with more flexibility and seating space.