'Urgent decisions' needed over EADS: Villepin

21st June 2006, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, June 21, 2006 (AFP) - French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin said Wednesday there were "urgent decisions to be taken" on the troubled European aerospace group EADS in which the French state is a major shareholder.

PARIS, June 21, 2006 (AFP) - French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin said Wednesday there were "urgent decisions to be taken" on the troubled European aerospace group EADS in which the French state is a major shareholder.

He also said in a speech in parliament that his government was determined "to take all the measures necessary so that EADS secures its production deadlines and supplies its clients."

EADS shares plunged last week after its aircraft manufacturing unit Airbus announced a second six-month delay in deliveries of its A380 superjumbo airliner.

Its co-chief executive Noel Forgeard subsequently came under fire when it emerged that he and other senior executives had sold shares in the group in mid-March.

Forgeard, who has said he learned of possible delays in April, has insisted he did not have access to "privileged information" when the sales were made.

Villepin said Tuesday that Finance Minister Thierry Breton was working on the "important decisions" with the French and European partners in EADS.

The bilateral management structure at EADS, with two co-chairmen and two co-chief executives, reflects key shareholdings.

German-US automaker DaimlerChrysler, the French state, and Lagardere are among the group's major shareholders, although both DaimlerChrysler and Lagardere sold 7.5 percent stakes in early April. France holds a 15-percent stake.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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