On Wednesday, 14th November, Antoine Bouvier, the Chief Executive Officer of MBDA, laid the first stone of France’s future demilitarization facility which is to be built at MBDA’s Bourges Subdray site. Representatives from both the civil and military authorities were present at the event.
Before the end of 2013, this facility will become operational at which point it will be capable of dismantling annually 2,500 tonnes of various types of sensitive munitions, notably missiles. It will permit the maximum recuperation of waste products which will be sorted, re-used or recycled in full accordance with French and European standards. Only those waste elements comprising energetic material will be incinerated in the thermic treatment unit.
This new complex weapons demilitarization capability will allow MBDA to extend its portfolio of activities and to offer to its military customer base, the full life cycle management of their products from conception through to destruction.
Around 12 million euros are being invested in this activity which should create around 20 direct jobs at the Bourges Subdray site.
Marking the occasion Antoine Bouvier stated: “In championing Europe’s missile sector and as a world leader, MBDA is committed to creating firm and lasting partnerships with its domestic and export customers. These customers are not only looking for guaranteed security of supply and support for their equipment, they are also recognizing more and more the need to ensure the necessary safe treatment of their complex weapons at the end of their service life. With this new industrial installation we are showing our desire to further reinforce the partner relationship that we have with our military customers”.
In constructing this facility, MBDA is responding to France’s desire to establish an industrial capability for dismantling munitions at the end of their life and for this to be done on national territory in order to guarantee the protection of its product confidentiality while always respecting the safety and environmental norms linked with this activity.
This commitment was underlined in a contract calling for the destruction of 36,000 complex munitions between now and 2017, a contract which was won by MBDA in November 2011 following a tender issued by NSPA (NATO Supply Procurement Agency) at the request of the French Ministry of Defence.
With a significant presence in five European countries and within the USA, in 2011 MBDA achieved a turnover of € 3 billion with an order book of € 10.5 billion. MBDA is jointly owned by BAE Systems (37.5%), EADS (37.5%) and Finmeccanica (25%).