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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Germany Wants Airbus Military Planes

BRUSSELS, Belgium -- Germany said Thursday it would like to buy up to 75 transport aircraft worth 20 billion Deutsche marks ($9.8 billion) from Airbus Industrie, which should seal the launch of the Airbus A400M military cargo-lifter.

Defense Minister Rudolf Scharping said Germany, which has long wavered over choosing between the A400M and the cheaper Russian-Ukrainian Antonov An-70, expected to start buying the planes from 2006 to 2007.

"A European solution is the priority in the debate about transport aircraft," Scharping said.

He added that cooperation with Ukraine and Russia was still important for Germany.

German government sources said Britain's announcement last month of its intention to order 25 of the A400M planes had helped spur the German decision to buy 75 of the planes.

Scharping said the aircraft decision would be discussed at Friday's French-German summit in Mainz.