Germany Blocks French Meteor Sale to Saudi Arabia
February 7, 2019
The German government has blocked the sale of Meteor air-to-air missiles to Saudi Arabia.
The Meteor, developed and produced by Paris-based MBDA but with German components, is not the target of a specific German veto, but rather its export to Saudi Arabia is being blocked by the German government’s embargo on all arms sales to the Saudi kingdom, decided in late November.
In particular, Germany once again decided to apply an embargo on the export of military material to Saudi Arabia, due to the country's involvement in the Yemeni civil war.
Under this policy, Berlin does not allow two German companies in Bayern-Chemie and TDW, which are subsidiaries of the European MBDA, to build subsystems used in the Meteor air-to-air missile.
Estimates say the value of the Meteor air-to-air missiles that Saudi Arabia is about to buy reaches $ 1 billion, and a ban on selling them from Berlin is a major blow to the manufacturing company operating in many European countries.
The ban, first reported by the French website La Tribune, will initially hit European missile manufacturer MBDA, but will probably also affect the sale of other weapon systems which include parts or components manufactured in Germany, such as the Eurofighter Typhoon.