Emmanuel Macron blasted the “sell out” as tensions over Franco-German aircraft projects boil | Politics | News

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Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron aim to take the next step in the development of the next-generation European fighter jet in the coming weeks. The Future Combat Air System (FCAS) will be built by German and French companies. Spain has also joined the project.

But tensions between the two EU leaders are now escalating after the German Chancellor demanded free access to Dassault’s trade secrets.
The French aeronautical firm should give up certain technologies it has developed for French defense systems, which it does not want to compromise on.

Airbus, its German counterpart, also refuses to deal with technological “black boxes” over which it could not have control due to lack of intellectual property.

Commenting on the issue, Patriots leader Florian Philippot blasted the German leader and warned French citizens of a potential sale at Macron’s hands.

He said: “’European’ combat aircraft: Germany demands access to Dassault’s trade secrets.

” What a surprise!

“Germany does not care about cooperation, it has a national strategy which involves the annihilation of its competitors.

“Macron sells us! ”

READ MORE: Macron ‘vulnerable’ ahead of elections – but not Le Pen

At this stage, the two countries have also committed 150 million euros in February 2020 for the first studies of demonstrators (phase 1A) planned over 18 months.

The new fighter is expected to replace the French Rafale and the German and Spanish Eurofighters by 2040.

The FCAS program, announced by the French and German governments in 2017, will provide the next level of air power by creating a system of manned and unmanned platforms with full operational capability expected by 2040.

FCAS is a key part of Macron’s push for military sovereignty on the continent and his goal of reducing his dependence on the NATO alliance.

So far, governments have only approved funding for prototype and design contracts, a small fraction of the multibillion-euro budget for the 20-year project.

Last week, President Macron said: “The FCAS will not be finished in the coming weeks. It is a complex question. ”

He added: “In the coming weeks, we will have raised the last remaining points and I hope that, by the spring, we will be able to arrive at the administrative and political validations which should keep the schedule and our ambitions”.

Merkel said that if the project is under the leadership of France, it must be a project that shows the two countries “on an equal footing”.

Adding that “there are still many questions to be clarified”.

In 2018, the UK launched Tempest, in response to the Franco-German Sixth Generation Stealth Fighter Development Program.

The UK has already pledged £ 2bn in the program which aims to start production by 2025, with delivery of the fighter system by 2035.

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