WAM Abu Dhabi, Feb 18th, 2013 (WAM)– The head of ME Region of Finmeccanica, Caio Mussolini has stressed the importance of Fenmeccanica’s participation in IDEX, as well as its presence in the GCC region in general and the UAE in particular, calling the IDEX "one of the biggest defense Exhibitions in the world" and an event of a big importance for the Italian defense company.
Caio Mussolini also stated that the United Arab Emirates since the late 70s has been a nation of paramount importance for Finmeccanica’s companies and a leading reference country in the Middle East region.
On Finmeccanica achievements’ on an international scale, he said that South Korea has selected the AgustaWestland AW159 to meet its maritime operational helicopter requirement. A program that includes the supply of eight AW159 helicopters to the Korean Navy and a comprehensive support and training range of services, and a contract share valued at about 270 million euro. Mussolini explained that the AW159s is the latest evolution of the legacy of Lynx helicopters, and that it will perform a wide range of roles, from both shore and ship bases, including anti-surface warfare, anti-submarine warfare, search and rescue, maritime security and maritime surveillance.
He added that in the United States, the General Dynamics and Alenia Aermacchi, announced recently the signing of a Letter of Intent to join forces and compete for the U.S. Air Force’s T-X trainer program, which will replace aging T-38 trainer jets and related training systems. The team will offer a fully integrated advanced pilot training system built around the M346 Alenia Aermacchi’s proven jet training aircraft and will present the most technologically advanced and affordable training solution for the U.S. Air Force.
Mr. Mussolini also added that the M-346 is an advanced jet trainer that will train pilots to operate fourth and fifth generation air-combat aircraft, and it is currently in production for 3 international customers.
On the status for the M346 Program in UAE, Caio stated that Finmeccaninca’s aircraft was selected after the trials carried out by the UAE AF in the country, and the official announcement was made during Idex 2009. Finmeccanina is working with the local authorities with the aim to better satisfy all their expectations and requirements, adding that the structure for a contract like this it’s not easy to manage and there are a lot of ancillary elements to be evaluated, discussed and agreed.
On the topic of the Selex merging, Caio Moussolini explained that in order to rationalize the Electronic activities inside Finmeccanica Group, it was necessary to establish a new business structure. Which is how "Selex Electronic Systems" came to be operational since 1st January.
The company will integrate SELEX Galileo, SELEX Elsag and SELEX Sistemi Integrati ativities, and is lead by Allan Cook and Fabrizio Giulianini, respectively Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
He concluded by stating that Selex ES has a workforce of approximately 17,900 employees, and that the new structure will be organized in three main divisions: Air and Space Systems, Land and Naval Systems, Security and Smart Systems and aims to develop and increase its market share in domestic and emerging countries by leveraging on its competencies in those sectors. And its activities revolve mainly in Italy and UK, while it enjoys a strong commercial presence in the UAS, Germany , Turkey, Romania, Brazil, Middle East and India.
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