New plans for Euro drone project

Airbus and two other companies have released a joint statement proposing to work with several European governments to produce a drone. Dassault Aviation and Finmeccanica would also be involved in the project, to create a European unmanned aircraft. The German government says it will discuss the issue of drones in parliament this summer.

In a joint statement, the three firms said they would work with the governments of Germany, Italy and France for up to two years to define those countries’ requirements for an unmanned aerial vehicle, with a view to producing it by 2020.

European Union leaders in December backed the idea of creating a European drone by 2020-2025 after previous attempts by companies and countries failed due to competing national needs, corporate rivalry, technical problems and lack of government support.

Airbus Defence & Space spent 500 million euros (407.3 million pounds) developing its Talarion drone but halted work in 2012 after failing to receive an order from the project’s instigators, France, Germany and Spain.

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