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French and Italian aid authorized for helicopter R&D

 |  March 7, 2012

The European Commission has authorized French and Italian aid for helicopter R&D. Helicopter manufacturers Eurocopter (France) and Agusta Westland (Italy) will receive public funding to develop new medium-weight civil helicopters that will reduce environmental impact while enhancing safety and performance. The Commission found that the aid makes up for a genuine market failure, given the difficulties in finding financing for risky projects with speculative returns.

France has pledged a 143 million euro repayable advance for the R&D of the Eurocopter X4 model. Italy will grant 272 million euros spread over 19 years as a zero-interest subsidized loan for the development of the Agusta Westland AW 169.

Full content: EC Press Release


Related content: Some Reflections on the European Commission’s State Aid Policy (Philip Lowe, European Commission)