The cup is full for France. According to our information, Paris will soon announce the end of its participation in the Franco-German MAWS program and turn to a Franco-French solution. Germany’s decision to buy five P-8A Poseidon (Boeing) planes from the United States for 1.43 billion euros, has very strongly annoyed in France, until the Elysee, yet so far very germanophile. But there, enough is enough. The decision does not really pass, as moreover the uncertainties on other programs in cooperation with Germany, in particular the Tiger Mark 3, which is a priority of the Army. Especially since in France, nobody really believes in buying five P-8A Poseidon planes as a “provisional solution” replacing the old P-3C Orions of the German Air Force. Clearly, Paris believes it has been cheated by Berlin.
The General Delegate for Armaments Joël Barre had already announced the color by explaining during his hearing at the National Assembly on June 15 that the purchase of the P-8A “forces us to reconsider continuing cooperation for this project”. Since then, the fire has turned scarlet with the validation of this acquisition by the Bundestag on June 23. In an interview with La Tribune in mid-May, the Minister of the Armed Forces, Florence Parly, explained that she had “recently discovered that the US Congress was preparing to give an FMS (Foreign Military Sales) authorization for P8 maritime patrol planes, which cannot be, in our view, a gapfiller pending the MAWS “.
“Concerning the maritime patrol aircraft MAWS, of which we had initiated the study in the company of our German friends, we are very likely to be disappointed after their choice, pre-announced by the Americans, the plane Boeing P–8A, explained to the National Assembly Joël Barre. Even if hethe Germans we presentntent as a transitional solution, a delivery of the P–8A to Germany in 2025 resets in question the need initially commun of the MAWS by 2035. If the German decision purchase of P–8A is confirmed, so I fear that that–this forces us at reconsider the pursuit of cooperation for this project.
Return of Dassault Aviation?
Rather than suffer a new German decision like the departure from Berlin without warning of the Franco-German tactical missile MAST-F, France should announce that it is leaving the MAWS program. What is plan B? A Franco-French solution with Dassault Aviation and Thales, from the Falcon 10X. The French industry knows how to do and has all the skills to succeed in a maritime patrol aircraft from the Falcon 10X despite its somewhat restrictive hold. It would therefore be the big comeback of the French aircraft manufacturer on this market, which had been ousted from the Franco-German program of patrol maritime. To his chagrin, moreover.
Its CEO Eric Trappier had bitterly regretted it at the beginning of March during the presentation of the annual results: on the Franco program–german from patrol maritime, “we put the only one who knows what he’s talking about outside, who is Dassault. Qui has experience since 1958 in maritime patrol aircraft? Who else ? Qui around the table ? We did the Atlantice 1, cwas BRéguet, we did the Atlantic 2, it was Dassault, we have modernized the ATL2, it is still Dassault and it still is. We do OCEAN (Continuous optimization of the maintenance of the Atlantic 2, editor’s note) The vertical soutienIt’s maritime patrol planes and we make surveillance planesance maritime. Nour competencest here and we are not around table”.