January 29, 2018 / 1:50 PM / 4 months ago

NATO buyer nations to meet on A400M on Feb. 5 - sources

BERLIN (Reuters) - NATO buyer nations will meet in London on Feb. 5 to discuss the A400M military transport aircraft program amid a drive by manufacturer Airbus (AIR.PA) to win relief from heavy fines over technical snags and delays, sources familiar with the meeting said.

An Airbus logo is pictured during the delivery of the new Airbus A380 aircraft to Singapore Airlines at the French headquarters of aircraft company Airbus in Colomiers near Toulouse, France, December 13, 2017. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

The meeting was scheduled for mid-November but postponed to February.

Airbus took a writedown of 1.2 billion euros on the program one year ago, warning of “significant risks ahead”. The company declined comment on next week’s meeting.

It has been in talks with officials from Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Spain, Turkey and the UK about the way forward.

Pan-European purchasing agency OCCAR, which oversees Europe’s largest defense project on behalf of the seven core buyer nations, will also participate in the meeting.

Germany, the largest A400M buyer, remains in protracted talks about forming a new coalition government. Berlin has been seen as the buyer most opposed to a new A400M bailout.

Airbus received a 3.5 billion euro bailout from the seven nations in 2010.

    Reporting by Andrea Shalal; editing by Jason Neely

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