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Thu, Apr 22, 2010

Boeing: Tanker Competition Should Be 'Fair And Transparent'

Expresses Concerns About EADS "Subsidies" From European Governments

Boeing responded predictably to the EADS announcement Tuesday that it plans to re-enter the competition for the U.S. Air Force KC-X Tanker contract through its subsidiary, EADS North America. The Air Force has said that EADS' announcement of intent will extend the proposal deadline by 60 days, from May 10 to July 9.

"From the outset, Boeing has been 100 percent focused on responding to the needs of our Air Force customer and preparing a competitive proposal, the company said in a prepared statement late Tuesday. "Only Boeing can produce a tanker that will meet the Air Force's 372 requirements and promise delivery of a combat-ready, safe and survivable tanker that is the most capable for the warfighter, the lowest cost for the taxpayer, and backed by Boeing's proven U.S. work force. We are confident in the superior value and capabilities of our NewGen Tanker and intend to present a compelling case for it in our proposal."

"While we are disappointed in the bid submission delay, we hope for a fair and transparent competition free of any additional changes intended to accommodate a non-U.S. prime contractor," the statement continued. "We also remain deeply concerned about the ability of a heavily subsidized Airbus/EADS to accept levels of financial risk that a commercial company such as Boeing cannot. We regret that these concerns will not be addressed in the bid evaluation, even when the U.S. government has proven in a world court that those subsidies are illegal and directly distort competition between Airbus and Boeing."

File Photo

Boeing says its NewGen Tanker will meet all 372 requirements set forth by the Air Force in its search for a medium-size tanker to replace the KC-135 fleet. It will be a widebody, multi-mission aircraft based on the proven Boeing 767 commercial aircraft which the company plans to build in existing Boeing facilities in Washington state and Kansas, relying on U.S. suppliers throughout the nation. Nationwide, Boeing claims the NewGen Tanker program will support approximately 50,000 total U.S. jobs with Boeing and more than 800 suppliers in more than 40 states.



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