Airbus has alerted US authorities about “certain inaccuracies” made in filings with the US State Department that cover commissions and political contributions in international arms exports.
The disclosure comes amidst an ongoing investigation by the UK Serious Fraud Office and France’s Parquet National Financier over allegations of improper use of third-party consultants by Airbus in commercial aircraft deals.
Airbus’ legal exposure has now spread to its dealings with the State Department on export deals. Airbus exports some aircraft, such as UH-72 Lakotas, to foreign customers from the USA. US arms export controls also apply to some US-made equipment installed on Airbus products, such engines and avionics.
In disclosing the compliance violations as part of a third quarter earnings statement on 31 October, Airbus offered few details about the nature of the inaccuracies.
The company’s statements says only that issue concerns the part of the US International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) law that requires applicants to disclose all relevant political contributions over $5,000 and commissions and fees over $100,000.
Airbus says it is cooperating with US authorities, but it is unable to estimate how long it could take to resolve the matter or the range of potential consequences.