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PARIS: New Eurofighter boss reveals ambitious sales target

The four-nation Eurofighter consortium is targeting a potential opportunity to export 250 more Typhoons during the next decade, says new chief executive Alberto Gutierrez.

Speaking to the media for the first time since replacing Enzo Casolini in early June, the former Airbus Military executive outlined three key priorities for his tenure at the helm of Europe's best-selling combat aircraft programme: campaigns; competitiveness; and capabilities.

"The size of the global market is close to 1,000 aircraft in the next decade, and our aim is to capture not less than 25%," says Gutierrez. "We have hopes of getting certain campaigns completed" during 2013, he adds.

The Typhoon is being offered to nations including Malaysia, South Korea and the United Arab Emirates, while Saudi Arabia could be interested in adding to its current commitment for 72. BAE Systems will soon deliver the next two of these aircraft from its Warton final assembly site in the UK, taking Riyadh's total to 28 units. Gutierrez also cites opportunities as existing in Bulgaria, Kuwait and Qatar.

EADS defence unit Cassidian is leading the Eurofighter campaign in South Korea, with Seoul understood to be seeking an improved price offer on the Typhoon and the rival Boeing F-15 Silent Eagle and Lockheed Martin F-35 within the next few weeks. The nation is expected to reach a decision in its 60-aircraft F-X III contest before the end of July, industry officials say.

Seeking efficiency improvements, Gutierrez says: "We have to make the product cheaper, and the way of making decisions leaner and faster. We have to offer value for money - not just price, but in lifecycle costs also."


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