Airbus ups A400M rhetoric

written by australianaviation.com.au | January 6, 2010

a400m-first-flight-2_lr_dec09EADS CEO Tomas Enders has threatened to abandon the troubled A400M military airlifter program unless partner nations contribute more funds towards the development of the aircraft, describing the program as a “constant drain on resources”.

The Financial Times Deutschland has reported Enders as telling company directors in late December that he “no longer believes in pursuing the program”, and that the company should prepare for it to be terminated by moving engineering resources to the A380 and A350 airliner programs. A source quoted in the report claims Enders “is not ready to threaten the civil aviation division, which is doing well, just for the A400M”.

The company has been in protracted negotiations with the program’s partner nations over the A400M’s technical specifications following three years of developmental delays, and has also asked them to “take their share of the burden” over and above the originally agreed €20bn (A$31bn) to complete the development and production programs for 180 aircraft that have been ordered by Germany, France, the UK, Spain, Belgium, Luxembourg and Turkey.

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