In the early 2000s, and for nearly 15 years, the French defense industry failed to sign any significant contract independently in Europe, and had to concentrate its efforts in the Middle East and Asia, to maintain a export volume compatible with the very low activity of the national order at that time. But in recent years, it seems that European countries, at least some, have once again trusted this industry to supply major equipment, helped it is true by the overall increase in defense budgets. We take a look back at these recent contracts signed by the French defense industry in Europe, as well as the most promising current competitions.
Belgium, the privileged partner
What have we not heard, and even read, about the Belgian decision to acquire the American F35, and not the French Rafale. Yet in barely a year, Brussels has awarded French defense industries two of the most important European contracts of the past 30 years. In November 2018, the Belgian authorities announced the signature of the CaMo contract, for Motorized Capacities, relating to the acquisition of 382 VBMR Griffon multi-role armored vehicles, and 60 French Jaguar EBRC Reconnaissance and Combat Armored vehicles, jointly designed by Nexter, Arquus and Thales, for an amount of 1,6 billion euros. Not only does Belgium acquire the last French armored vehicles, but it does so with the aim of optimizing the interoperability of its forces with French forces, in an approach of extended industrial and operational cooperation.
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