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    Academic Explains Significance of Airbus Removing German Parts From its Plane

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    European aerospace firm Airbus is removing German components from C-295 military transport aircraft due to Berlin’s ban on arms exports to Riyadh, Reuters reported citing sources. Sputnik discussed the consequences of the reported move with Dr K.I. Kourousis, a senior academic in airworthiness at the University of Limerick in Ireland.

    Sputnik: How much will it cost to redesign the C295 with non-German parts?

    Dr K.I. Kourousis: Replacing parts on the Airbus C295 could lead to minor (or major) design changes. Any redesigned parts might also need recertification, which in general is a significant cost driver. The overall cost involved in replacing the non-German parts of the C295 is unknown, as this would also be influenced by the commercial agreements between Airbus and the new vendors (subcontractors) of these parts. However, if we talk about 4% of the parts affected and if these parts are of relatively low commercial value one wouldn’t expect a big hit.

    READ MORE: Germany's Resumption of Arms Supplies to Riyadh Depends on Yemeni Conflict — FM

    Sputnik: Could this decision (to remove German parts) somehow affect Airbus financial condition in 2019, especially considering the fact that in the fourth quarter of 2018 Airbus profit increased by 66%?

    Dr K.I. Kourousis:  At this stage it would be difficult to estimate the financial impact of replacing parts on the Airbus C295. It may be something that Airbus can absorb easily though, given the very strong financial performance. If, however, this affects the Eurofighter, or other Airbus products, it may be more substantial (still not quantifiable without having inside information).

    READ MORE: 17 EU Member States Team Up Against Franco-German Initiative — Reports

    Sputnik: How important was Germany’s contribution to the development of Airbus?

    Dr K.I. Kourousis: Germany, along with France, were the founding partners of Airbus in the 1970s. Both countries have equally contributed to the creation of the  company and until today Germany’s commitment has been critical to the success of Airbus. It is of note that Airbus has 46,000 employees in Germany, a figure accounting for almost one third of the Airbus’ workforce.

    Sputnik: How severely will Airbus be damaged by Germany’s sanctions? How will this situation affect the aircraft market?

    Dr K.I. Kourousis: This matter can primarily affect (to an unknown degree) the operation of Airbus Defence & Space, given that the sanctions may affect some of its military products (e.g. C295, Eurofighter). One can only speculate without any hard evidence, as such it would be wise to wait for more information around the political situation that led to this decision and how this could be reversed (given the small or larger financial damage that might be caused to Airbus).

    The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect Sputnik's position,

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    arms sales, Airbus C295, Airbus, Germany, Europe, Spain, Saudi Arabia
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