The UK will cut the order from 25 to 22 aircrafts, see article in #9. I wonder if other nations will follow?
More good news, its confirmed that the A400M will hold its original development targets in terms of payload. The German PUMA IFV will fit.
http://www.ad-hoc-news.de/militaertr...chten/21107242Nach Angaben des Verteidigungsministeriums ist das Problem der Zuladung beim A400M gelöst. Hier werde sichergestellt, dass die vorgesehenen Systeme wie der neue deutsche Schützenpanzer «Puma» transportiert werden können. Die Einigung steht laut Ministerium noch unter Vorbehalt der jeweiligen nationalen Billigung.
A400M: The Bailout Package
AviationWeekPosted by Robert Wall at 3/5/2010 11:16 AM CST
After a year of talks, we now have the agreement between EADS and A400M-buying governments on how to cover the multi-billion euro cost overrun on the formerly 20 billion euro military transport program.
Under the terms just announced, governments will put in another 3.5 billion euros, at least. Most of that, 2 billion euros, is a direct adjustment to the scope of the contract. Another 1.5 billion is effectively treated as money made available now that would be recouped as A400M export contracts are booked. Presumably if exports don't cover the total, it is money simply lost to the taxpayer.
Governments will also provide accelerated pre-delivery payments through 2014. That will help EADS's cash flow at a time the company also needs financial resources for various other efforts, including the increasing development bill associated with the A350 twin-widebody.
EADS is having to take another earnings charge, although the 1.8 billion euros to be booked when earnings are released next week is less than expected.
There are still some issues to be worked out, but the big issues now appear settled.
http://www.businessweek.com/ap/finan.../D9E93NIG0.htmGermany praises deal on financing of Airbus A400M
Germany's Defense Minister is praising the agreement on the financing of the troubled Airbus A400M military transport plane as "good news."
Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg told broadcaster MDR on Saturday the deal will close a gap in crucial military equipment and secure many jobs in the German industry.
The A400M is to replace Germany's aging fleet of Transall transport planes, whose increasing maintenance costs Guttenberg called "exorbitant."
"This is good news, especially as it helps secure many jobs," Guttenberg added.
According to *******, German MOD is planning to lower the number of planes order, as well as give up the Terrain following requirement.
Will look for a link/source
Hmm, I wonder if this is true and if yes, how many planes get cancelled.
Source: Defense NewsA400M Cost Overrun Set at 10%
By PIERRE TRAN
Published: 8 Mar 2010 11:45
PARIS - An agreement by customer nations to provide 3.5 billion euros ($4.8 billion) of financial support for the A400M represents a 10 percent cost overrun on the airlifter program, with Britain expected to cancel two or three aircraft, French Defense Minister Hervé Morin said March 8.
The prospective cut in orders by London is smaller than expected, with previous estimates going to six fewer units than the original 25 planes purchased, because of the cost overrun.
As part of the overall pact, Britain is expected to cancel "two or three aircraft," Morin told a press conference on the A400M agreement reached March 5. Those prospective cancellations came under the agreement which limits the maximum cancellations to 10, he said.
No other country has signaled an intention to cancel, he said.
A 10 percent overrun was "extremely reasonable," given that many arms programs run over budget, Morin said, citing the Eurofighter Typhoon and Joint Strike Fighter programs.
That 10 percent figure comprises the funding that each of the seven clients will contribute on a pro rata basis based on the number of aircraft ordered, he said.
For France, the extra cost will be 550 million euros, based on the 5.5 billion euros budgeted for acquisition, he said. The overall base figure for France rises to 7 billion euros when the development costs are included, he said.
Under the agreement reached March 8, the countries will accept a 2 billion euro increase over the contract price and contribute 1.5 billion euros in export levy facilities.
The 10 percent overrun funded by the customers compares with EADS' own estimate of around 25 percent excess on the program budget.
EADS had asked the customers to pay 24.39 billion euros, that is 5.2 billion extra on the original contract price of 19.19 billion agreed in 2003, according to a report by PricewaterhouseCooper prepared for the contract agency OCCAR.
EADS is due to report a 2009 net and operating loss when it publishes results March 9.
Under the agreement reached, the customers waived 1.2 billion euros of penalties for delays and will speed up pre-delivery payments between 2010 and 2014 to ensure a "minimum treasury" for EADS. The exact amount of those payments remained to be negotiated, along with a clause covering cost inflation on materials for industry, said the procurement chief, Laurent Collet-Billon of the Direction Générale pour l'Armement (DGA).
France would contribute 400 million euros of the total 1.5 billion of export levy facilities, Morin said. The countries would be repaid from future export sales, which Morin estimated at 300 units over the next 20 years. The export levy facilities fall outside the contract terms.
EADS Chief Executive Louis Gallois said last June before the Paris Airshow the company was making the A400M at a loss and would only make money on export orders.
The overall agreement also provides for a staged delivery of capabilities, with an initial operating capability of the basic transport mission, followed by air drop, aerial refuelling and finally low-level flight and automatic terrain following, with a year needed for each new capability.
France will get its first aircraft delivered in 2013, seven units by 2014, 35 in 2020 and the last in 2024.
As a stop-gap measure, France will buy eight Casa CN235 light transport aircraft and extend the life of Transall planes to 2018.
The cost of buying a mix of C-130Js and C-17s as interim solutions would have been 15 percent more costly than buying the A400M aircraft at the higher price, Morin said.
Belgium, Britain, Germany, France, Luxembourg, Spain and Turkey ordered 180 of the A400M in 2003 under a fixed-price commercial contract with Airbus covering development and production.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/8568817.stmAirbus plans sales of A400M to US
Europe's leading aircraft manufacturer Airbus says it plans to sell around 210 of its A400M military planes to the US.
The company said it hopes to sell 500 of the transporters to countries without existing orders.
The head of Airbus Military, Domingo Urena, told reporters the US was a "key country" for the A400M programme.
The plan comes despite the recent decision by Airbus's parent company, EADS, to end its bid for a massive US refuelling tanker contract.
That bid was ended amid complaints from EADS's US partner, Northrop Grumman Corporation, that the terms of the contract favoured Airbus's American rival Boeing.
Commenting on plans for the A400M programme, Mr Urena said the US was an still an obvious market to target.
"It's out of the question that we don't go over to compete in the United States, insofar as the American's give us the opportunity to do it," he said.
Source: Defense NewsU.K. Announcement To Provide Details On A400M, Tornado Deal
By ANDREW CHUTER
Published: 28 Mar 2010 17:02
The British government is expected to provide details March 29 on the deal it struck to continue as part of the A400M airlifter project, in what is likely to be the last major defense equipment program announcement before the Labour Party calls a general election.
Britain's contribution to the increase - the seven partner nations agreed to pay prime contractor EADS an additional 2 billion euros toward the cost of the much-delayed airlifter program - will be minimal, Quentin Davis, the defence procurement minister, told Defense News.
The Ministry of Defence announcement is also expected to include news of a major Tornado strike aircraft support deal for engine company Rolls-Royce and other contracts related to the Royal Air Force.
The Airbus partner nations have been negotiating for months with EADS over a financial rescue package for the aircraft, which is years late and hugely over budget.
The sides agreed earlier this month on a revised financial and delivery schedule that involved both sides in putting up more cash to complete the program.
Britain's contribution will involve a minimal cost increase and a reduced delivery of up to three aircraft from the original order for 25.
Davis said the recent deal was achieved "without any degradation to technical specifications of concern to us."
Davis said that at one stage the U.K. was looking at having to reduce its order to 19 aircraft. Now the minimum order, which is still subject to negotiation, will be 22.
The defence procurement minister said delivery of aircraft to the RAF would get underway in earnest in 2014. Davis said he was hoping for a "Christmas present" of an aircraft to be delivered in late 2013.
The announcement, expected via a statement to Parliament by Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth, is the third in series of contract awards released by the government in a week.
It was about time for MSN002:
Article continued @ FlightglobalSecond A400M takes off
By Craig Hoyle
A second A400M has joined Airbus Military’s operational flight test fleet, and taken the delayed type past the 70 flight hour mark.
Piloted by Michel Gagneux, Karl-Heinz Mai and with three flight test engineers aboard, aircraft MSN002 completed a 4h 50min debut sorties from Seville, Spain on 8 April. Carrying heavy flight-test instrumentation, the aircraft got airborne with a take-off weight of 128t; 13t below the A400M’s expected maximum.
Article continued @ Aviation WeekA400M Buyers Coping With New Schedule
Apr 13, 2010
By Douglas Barrie and Robert Wall
As budget pressures mount in Europe, delays in the Airbus Military A400M are not turning into a windfall for other manufacturers, as the U.K. is signaling it will not buy additional gap-filler airlifters.
There are also mounting indications that it will be months before an agreement between industry and government is converted into a firm contract on the program’s multibillion-euro cost overrun and three years of delays. Germany is awaiting more data on unit cost, a German defense ministry official says, and the U.K.’s ability to sign up is curtailed by the general election campaign now underway. With the prospect of the May 6 vote resulting in a hung Parliament, London’s ability to fully commit to a new program plan may be limited for some time.