MADIRD ($1=1.00 Euro) — The Ministry of Protection of Spain has not but determined what to do with the 13 A400M transport plane it can initially obtain from 2025 and which it doesn’t plan to make use of.

Two Turkish A400M stuck in Ukraine delivering Bayraktar UAVs
Picture credit score: FluRevue

Spain initially positioned an order for 27 A400Ms, however in Might 2013 the Ministry of Protection introduced that it could function solely 14 plane. At the moment, the thirty first Air Drive Wing, which is answerable for its operation, already has 13 of the 14 plane, having acquired two A400Ms in latest months.

Particularly, the twelfth plane arrived on 10 Might and the thirteenth on 13 July. The final one, with in-flight refueling capability, will likely be delivered to the unit situated at Zaragoza Air Base in Might 2023, based on the schedule supplied by the ministry.

“With the supply of the three plane talked about within the earlier part, the 14 plane to be operated by the Spanish Armed Forces are full. As of as we speak, no choice has been taken on the remaining 13 A400M plane,” official sources informed

What’s going to occur to the remaining 13 planes?

When the Ministry of Protection determined to maintain solely 14 plane, the ministry stated the thought was to attempt to promote the remaining 13 plane to different international locations within the plane. It needs to be remembered that this lot will likely be delivered by Airbus between 2025 and 2030, based on the modification of the acquisition contract signed in 2016 between the ministry and the plane producer.

A sale stays one of the crucial viable choices, particularly for the reason that plane has already reached operational maturity – greater than 100 A400Ms are flying – and has additionally demonstrated its capabilities in actual missions. Airbus, after years of business campaigns, received contracts in Indonesia and Kazakhstan.

A part of this gross sales success is because of the glorious efficiency of the A400M fleet, which is already in service in high-profile missions such because the evacuation from Afghanistan in August and September 2021. Within the case of Spain, the plane additionally performed a key function within the arrival of medical provides throughout the worst moments of the pandemic, and not too long ago it has additionally been used to ship weapons to Ukraine.

Two Turkish A400M stuck in Ukraine delivering Bayraktar UAVs
Picture credit score: FlugRevue

One of many plane’s strengths is its versatility. The A400M is provided to carry out a variety of missions: cargo transport, troop transport, parachute descent, medical evacuation, aerial refueling, or digital surveillance. Airbus not too long ago examined a package that turns an airplane into a fireplace extinguisher. Alternatively, among the many disadvantages, the excessive price of acquisition, operation, and upkeep stand out, which implies that many international locations don’t even attempt to purchase it.

Spain can also select to maintain one of many 13 items exactly due to the aforementioned good efficiency and adaptability. The UK, considered one of seven international locations within the A400M program – there are additionally France, Germany, Turkey, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Spain itself – plans to amass extra plane.


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