The Government approved in cabinet of this week two royal decrees establishing the rules for the direct granting to the company of two loans with a unit value of 2,317 million euros Airbus Defense and Space for programs Euromale RPAS and modernization of attack helicopters Tiger from Land Army to the version MKIII.
The objective is to finance the Spanish participation in these programs between 2022 and 2028. The Euromale loan has an amount of 1,429 million and the Tigre loan of 707 million. This is one of the mechanisms used to initiate programs to modernize the Armed Forces.
The money will come from the Ministry of Industry, which will advance part of the program funds to Airbus to start production. The company will then repay the loan to the State as the Ministry of Defense pays it for the purchase of the acquired material. The industry already received the government’s go-ahead in April to fund these programs, plus the purchase of Eurofighter for the Canary Islands.
Spain participates in the European program for the development of long-range and medium-altitude remotely manned aircraft systems Euromale SAPR together with France, Italy and Germany. The drone can also carry weapons. In the Spanish case, the order concerns four systems, each consisting of three aircraft and two ground control stations. The investment envisaged by Spain in this program is 1,739 million euros, not counting the logistical support.
Euromale model. Photo: www.infodefensa.com
After the execution of a first design phase, the second development phase of the program is already underway in view of the entry into service of the system in 2028. The participation of the countries in this phase is as follows: 32% for Germany, 24% for Italy and 22% for France and Spain, respectively.
Industria specifies that “the multi-year financing will be signed with Airbus Defense and Space and will be used to partially cover the expenses and investments necessary for the design, development, production and support for entry into service and logistical support” of the APR.
The economic impact is positive, adds the ministry. In particular, the program secures the workload at the Airbus plants in Getafe, Seville and Cadiz. As regards jobs, the forecast is for an average of 3,000 jobs per year over the next 15 years, including direct, indirect and induced in Spain.
The helicopter program Tiger MK III is a bilateral program between Spain and France to modernize their respective helicopter fleets Tiger, with the aim of extending its useful life from 20 to 40 years and increasing its capacity. Modernization consists of improving and renewing the systems and subsystems, avionics architecture, operational equipment and weapons capabilities of the existing Tiger helicopter fleet. In this case, the Ministry of Defense will invest 1,185 million.
In this case, Industry specifies that “the multi-year loan will be signed with Airbus Helicopters Spain, which is the entity through which the Spanish participation in the program will be channeled” and will serve to cover “partially the expenses and investments necessary to carry out the work that must be performed for the modernization to a new common standard of the fleets of 42 helicopters from France and 18 helicopters from Spain in the period 2022-2028”.
“For Helicopters Airbus Spainthis project guarantees its workload in the Getafe and Albacete plants, significantly increasing the staff,” he points out.