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January 15, 2019 | Local, Aerospace

Airbus songe à b'tir deux nouvelles usines au Québec

JEAN-FRANÇOIS CODÈRE
La Presse

Le géant Airbus pourrait, s'il décroche deux importants contrats canadiens dont l'octroi doit se faire au cours des prochaines années, b'tir deux nouvelles usines d'assemblage au Québec, probablement à Mirabel, a laissé entendre ce matin Simon Jacques, chef d'Airbus Défense au Canada.

Le premier de ces contrats doit être octroyé cette année par Télésat, un opérateur canadien de satellites de télécommunication. Celui-ci souhaite lancer quelques centaines de nouveaux satellites à orbite basse pour un réseau d'accès à l'Internet. Selon M. Jacques, l'usine qui fabriquerait ces satellites pourrait employer environ 200 personnes. L'entreprise affirme mener des discussions avec les gouvernements provincial et fédéral en vue de l'installer au Québec, si elle obtient le contrat.

« Ce serait un game changer pour l'aérospatiale au Canada », estime M. Jacques.

Avions de chasse

L'autre contrat, plus important, est celui du remplacement des avions de chasse canadiens. Airbus est l'une des quatre entreprises, avec Boeing, Lockheed et SAAB, qui manifeste toujours son intérêt pour l'obtention de cet important contrat concernant 88 chasseurs, qui devront remplacer la flotte de F18 actuels.

L'une des conditions de cet appel d'offres, qui doit normalement être lancé avant la prochaine campagne électorale fédérale, imposera du contenu canadien. Dans ce contexte, Airbus étudie l'option de construire une usine d'assemblage final au Canada, probablement au Québec, a aussi indiqué M. Jacques.

Airbus a par ailleurs confirmé que la Société en commandite C Series, où elle est associée à Bombardier et au gouvernement du Québec, investit présentement 30 millions de dollars américains (40 millions de dollars) pour améliorer ses installations de Mirabel. Des dômes permettant d'héberger des avions en construction seront ajoutés au printemps. Ils sont déjà en construction. Un nouveau centre de livraison sera aussi ajouté au quatrième trimestre.

https://www.lapresse.ca/affaires/economie/transports/201901/14/01-5210974-airbus-songe-a-batir-deux-nouvelles-usines-au-quebec.php

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