Opportunities coincide with wishes
Largest helicopter producer, AgustaWestland, keen to collaborate with Belarus
AgustaWestland is interested in co-operating with Belarus. “We’ve agreed to organise a visit for our potential partners to Belarus,” commented the Prime Minister, Andrei Kobyakov, during his meeting with journalists after the visit to the AgustaWestland production facility — a subsidiary of the Finmeccanica company.
At the AgustaWestland production facility
He also reminded us that in Soviet times, Belarus produced a great variety of component parts, including navigation and radiolocation systems for the aerospace industry. “Today we are talking about Belarus’ inclusion in a co-operative project with Finmeccanica S.p.A.”
AgustaWestland (AW) is the world leader in helicopter building, a subsidiary of Finmeccanica. Founded in 2001, the company has been producing helicopters for both military and civil purposes. Its production areas and offices are located in Italy, the UK, Poland and the United States. In 2014, AgustaWestland netted 4.4bn Euros profit while the company’s business portfolio is estimated at 4.5bn Euros. Finmeccanica S.p.A. is one of the leading industrial groups in the high-technology sector in Italy and one of the top global players in aerospace, defence and security.
The meeting at the Maserati production facility in Turin also tackled the prospects of working with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, and Mr. Kobyakov visited the manufacturer. While chatting to the executives, Belarus’ PM announced that we are ready to organise a visit of the company’s delegation to Minsk for further collaborative discussions.
Alexey Vaganov, a member of the Supervisory Board of the Unison JV JSC, explained to journalists that the two sides have initially agreed to implement two projects dealing with the assembly of passenger and commercial vehicles. “It refers primarily to the commercial vehicles Iveco and Fiat, as well as passenger automobiles. Our first step is the establishment of SKD assembly in 2016, and the level of localisation is expected to reach 30-50 percent in 2016,” he noted.
There are plans to use the facilities of JV Unison JSC (aiming to produce 20,000 vehicles per year) and Belautomaz in the Fiat Chrysler Automobile project. According to Mr. Vaganov, the total investment hasn’t yet been announced; only models and technical assistance have been discussed. During the meeting, there were steps taken to establish a working group to develop a memorandum on co-operation between Belarus and Fiat Chrysler. The automobile concern is the largest automobile-building company, founded after the merger of Fiat and American Chrysler. The company is the world’s seventh biggest vehicle producer. Their headquarters are located in the Netherlands while its financial centre is in the UK.
After a two day visit of the Belarusian governmental delegation to the Italian Republic, Mr. Kobyakov told journalists that Belarus and Italy are entering a new level of interaction.
By Irina Ushakova