France and Germany welcome agreement on new European fighter jet

France and Germany on Friday welcomed the conclusion of a deal to build a new European fighter jet after months of disagreements between the two companies involved, Airbus and Dassault Aviation.

Launched by France and Germany in 2017, followed by Spain Future Combat Air System (FCAS) aims to have a next-generation jet in service along with integrated drone fleets by 2040.

But progress on the new low-profile delta-wing aircraft has been hampered by struggles over industrial labor sharing as well as intellectual property rights over advanced technology.

“After intensive negotiations between the manufacturers, an agreement was reached on the next phase of the program (FCAS),” the German Ministry of Defense said.

Airbus later on Friday confirmed the deal after talks between industry and governments.

“There are now a number of formal steps to be taken in the relevant countries to enable the rapid signing of the contract, which we will have to follow,” the European aircraft manufacturer said.

In August 2021, the three countries signed an agreement to inject 3.6 billion euros (about $4 billion) into the initial phase of the project, known as Phase 1B, to build a so-called flight demonstrator starting in 2025.

But contracts have not been signed with Airbus and Dassault, which oversee the German and French operations, respectively.

The French presidential administration on Friday also welcomed the conclusion of the deal.

“The political agreement on FCAS is a big step forward and – especially in the current international context – an important signal of the excellent cooperation between France, Germany and Spain,” the German ministry said in a statement.

“This strengthens Europe’s military capabilities and guarantees important know-how for our industry and, in a broader sense, for European industry,” the president’s office said.

Prime Minister of France Elizabeth Bourne going to meet the chancellor Olaf Scholz to Germany on Nov. 25, a visit that could help improve defense cooperation as Europe rethinks its military strategy Russia’s war against Ukraine.

Germany alarmed many in Paris this March when it announced the a deal to buy 35 F-35 aircraft in the United States firm Lockheed Martin. The planes are certified to carry US nuclear warheads stored in Europe as part of the NATO defense alliance.

FCAS Opponent – The future British fighter jet of the Tempest projectwhose partners are Italy and Sweden, reached its own milestone in July when it announced that an early prototype would fly “for the next five years.” France and Germany welcome agreement on new European fighter jet

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