Brazilian Air Force to cut KC-390 order

Brazilian Air Force KC-390 multi-mission aircraft.

Bad news for the Brazilian aerospace manufacturer Embraer, which will suffer a cut of the production plan after the Brazilian Air Force announced its intention to reduce the order of KC-390 aircraft.

The service said on May 26 that the global health crisis had severe repercussions on the Brazilian economy and on defense budgets. They have thus decided to revise the KC-390 production contract with Embraer.

The main problem concerns the quantity of 28 aircraft under the current contract which proved unsustainable with the current funds of the armed force, both for the acquisition and for the logistical support over time.

According to the Brazilian Air Force, the KC-390 aircraft has achieved exceptional operating rates since its entry into service, resulting in a much higher capacity in volume and agility in the transport of goods and personnel. These factors were observed during the various missions carried out during 2020 and 2021.

Therefore, considering the current socio-economic situation and the high rates of return of the units already delivered, the Air Force Command has ascertained the need to renegotiate the current contract, with a focus on a better adaptation of production and public interests.

After a series of budget analyzes and operational studies launched in 2019, the Aeronautical High Command determined the start of the contractual negotiation process with Embraer. The target is to reduce the total number of aircraft delivered and to agree on a production rate of 2 aircraft per year (currently 3 aircraft per year), factors deemed adequate considering the operational, logistical and financial aspects. The order will most likely be reduced to 20 aircraft.

Written by Matteo Sanzani
Image: Embraer

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