boy. French labor unions -- already nervous from efforts on the
part of EADS and Airbus to relocate jobs overseas -- aren't going
to be happy with this one.
EADS CEO Louis Gallois has been watching his company's profits
get pounded by the growing disparity in value between the euro and
the US dollar. He told the Associated Press Tuesday he wants to
transform EADS North America and make it "an American citizen."
Gallois says he wants EADS to meet US security requirements --
and acquire and partner in sites in the United States, or in other
dollar-based countries, or otherwise transfer the company's
activities outside the euro zone.
One big step already taken has been EADS's partnership with
Northrop Grumman on the KC-45A, a new aerial refueling tanker which
earlier beat a Boeing design to win a US Air Force contract for 179
planes, worth $35 billion. Boeing's protest of that award is
expected to bring a ruling from the US Government Accountability
Office by June, though several analysts say the deal will probably
Gallois says Airbus has already sold 400 new jets in the first
quarter, toward its goal of 700 for the year. Coming off a huge
2007 for both Airbus and Boeing, Gallois noted air traffic growth
in Europe and the US and Europe is slowing, but remains strong in
Asia and the Middle East.