Germany calls for new A400M risk assessment after latest delays

BERLIN, May 5 (Reuters) - Germany wants a new risk assessment of Airbus Group’s long-delayed A400m military aircraft programme, the head of the country’s parliamentary defence committee was quoted as saying.

Germany has ordered 53 of the planes from Airbus, but deliveries have been delayed as Europe’s largest aerospace company grapples with production delays.

Airbus last week prepared investors for a charge on the A400M programme as it tries to fix fresh problems, including gearbox glitches on its turboprop engines.

Wolfgang Hellmich told the Funke Media Group in comments published on Thursday that he is calling for a new risk assessment of the project next week to find out if there is a solution to the problems and whether there will be more delays.

“We want clarity,” Hellmich said, adding he questioned whether the aircraft could fulfil what has been promised.

Military use of the A400M has been hampered after European authorities insisted that checks be made on the gearbox after every 20 hours of use.

“We are in a very difficult situation,” Hellmich said. “It’s also possible to cancel the project.” (Writing by Caroline Copley; Editing by Alexander Smith)