Augsburg, October 30, 2020. Hans Steininger, CEO of MT Aerospace, the largest German supplier to the European launcher program Ariane, has referred to yesterday's decisions by the Council of the European Space Agency ESA on the future of the new Ariane 6 rocket as an important first step. "With the additional funds requested, part of the additional costs caused by the delay in the first launch can be compensated," said Steininger. "The effects of the probably lower launch cadence will have to be clarified between ESA and industry in the coming months. The risk is that the number of annual launches will develop below plan, thus endangering European sites. This would result in a substantial reduction in workforce".
In a meeting yesterday, the ESA Council decided to ask the member states of the space agency for further support. The countries are to pay a total of 230 million euros. This brings the development costs to around 3.8 billion euros. "If the ESA member states do not provide the necessary additional financial support, this would pose an existential threat to the European launcher industry, the German space industry and thus the Augsburg location with its high-tech jobs," warned Steininger. At MT Aerospace in Augsburg, 150 jobs of highly qualified space engineers would then be directly threatened.