Dassault Feeling the Dollar Pinch

 - December 4, 2007, 12:07 PM

According to Dassault Aviation chairman and CEO Charles Edelstenne, the French aircraft manufacturer is planning on moving some of its activities out of Europe because of the weak dollar’s effect on its bottom line. The company’s production is based in Europe and its costs are calculated in euros, but it sells its airplanes in dollars. Since 2005, the U.S. dollar has depreciated 30 percent against the euro. Edelstenne is expected to meet with union representatives as early as tomorrow about his plans, but any changes aren’t expected to be announced publicly until next month. He told Paris daily Le Monde that assembly of Dassault Falcons and Rafale fighters, as well as other “high technology work,” would stay in France to “guarantee the quality of our planes.” Component manufacturing and some office work could be moved to “dollar or low-cost zones, as has been done by the automobile industry,” Edelstenne said, adding, “We must reduce our costs further to remain competitive.”