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Boeing to end C-17 military aircraft programme in 2015


USAF C-17 Globemaster IIIs on a low-level training mission over the Blue Ridge Mountains in the eastern US. Photo: US DoD.

LONG BEACH, CALIFORNIA (BNS): Boeing announced Wednesday it would end production of its C-17 Globemaster III military transport aircraft in 2015.

Boeing said it would close the C-17 final assembly plant in Long Beach, California in 2015, after completing the 22 aircraft remaining to be built.

"Ending C-17 production was a very difficult but necessary decision. The C-17 remains the world's most capable airlifter with unmatched readiness and cost effectiveness," Dennis Muilenburg, president and chief executive officer of Boeing DefenCe, Space & Security, was quoted as saying in the company news release.

Boeing will continue after-delivery support of the worldwide C-17 fleet as part of the C-17 Globemaster III Integrated Sustainment Programme (GISP) Performance-Based Logistics agreement.

"While the desire for the C-17's capabilities is high, budgets cannot support additional purchases in the timing required to keep the production line open," Muilenburg said.

"What's more, here in the United States the sequestration situation has created significant planning difficulties for our customers and the entire aerospace industry. Such uncertainty forces difficult decisions like this C-17 line closure," he added.

Boeing expects a charge of less than USD 100 million, which will be recorded this quarter, as a result of this announcement. The charge will not impact financial guidance for the year.

Nearly 3,000 employees support the C-17 production programme in Long Beach; Macon, Georgia.; Mesa, Arizona and St. Louis. Workforce reductions will begin in early 2014 and continue through closure.

Additionally, the C-17 industrial team includes more than 650 suppliers in 44 states. Boeing and its suppliers provide 20,000 jobs in support of C-17 production.

Since the first flight on Sept. 15, 1991, Boeing has delivered 257 C-17s, including 223 to the US Air Force, and a total of 34 to Australia, Canada, India, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the 12-member Strategic Airlift Capability initiative of NATO and Partnership for Peace nations.

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Boeing  C-17  Aircraft  

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