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Luxembourg moving towards first military helicopter unit


The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg signed a 145M€ (US$178.5M) contract with Airbus Helicopters for five rotary wing platforms, the Finance Minister announced yesterday, without specifying the models. 


Luxembourg moving forward to its first military helicopter uni 001 Three French Army NH90 TTH helicopters
(Crédit: NHIndustries/Les Frères Remusat)


The five helicopters represent an amount of approximately "145 million euros", said the country's Minister of Finance, Étienne Schneider. Two of them (20 million euros) will be assigned to the Grand Ducal Police. The other three (125 million euros) will be operated by the Luxembourg army and therefore NATO, he stated, adding that they can be used on Luxembourg territory if necessary. Once delivered, they will form the first effective military helicopter unit in the country's history. 

Besides the helicopters, Airbus and the Luxembourg Government have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to establish a framework for increased global long-term cooperation in the areas of cybersecurity, space technologies, remotely piloted aircraft systems as well as rotary wing aircraft.Airbus (stock exchange symbol: AIR) and the Luxembourg Government have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to establish a framework for increased global long-term cooperation in the areas of cybersecurity, space technologies, remotely piloted aircraft systems as well as rotary wing aircraft.

At the occasion of a State visit to France of Their Royal Highnesses the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Luxembourg and during a visit to Airbus in Toulouse, both sides agreed to strengthen industrial collaboration and to develop research partnerships.

In cybersecurity and in the field of intelligence and training, Airbus will develop a partnership with the Luxembourg Cybersecurity Competence Center (C3), a public private partnership programme, to provide intelligence, cybersecurity skills and expertise, as well as training and testing facilities to economic actors. Airbus also agrees to assess the opportunities of a long-term partnership with LuxTrust, a public-private certification authority and qualified trust-services provider that issues and manages digital identities with a high level of security and compliance. Airbus will also continue and expand its collaboration with GIE Incert. In space, Airbus and the Luxembourg Government will identify areas of cooperation for the future space economy.

In the area of rotary wing aircraft, Airbus will become a privileged partner for Luxembourg-based companies, setting directions for new and expanded collaboration. Opportunities also include research & development activities.

The collaboration with Airbus is in line with the Luxembourg Defence Guidelines for 2025+ establishing the framework for the development of Luxembourg’s Defence,” said Etienne Schneider, Luxembourg’s Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of the Economy and Minister of Defence. “Within this framework, we are developing a strategy for industry, innovation and research in order to involve Luxembourg’s economic fabric in defence capability building when it comes to support NATO and EU priority defence capability development requirements.”

Patrick de Castelbajac, Executive Vice President Strategy and International at Airbus, said: “We are strengthening our cooperation with one of our longest-standing European and NATO partner countries. We believe this agreement with Luxembourg will have a mutual benefit in some new and exciting areas such as defence, space, cybersecurity and helicopters. Airbus is looking forward to deepening its long-term industrial cooperation with Luxembourg.

As part of the MoU, Airbus agreed to provide training sessions to Luxembourg-based companies to become potential suppliers. A delegation of executive level representatives from top Luxembourg-based suppliers participated in Toulouse in a dedicated training session today at the Airbus premises.