27 October, 2015 By Stephen Trimble – FG
Washington DC - Embraer has flown the KC-390 again for the first time in eight months as the company’s Defence and Security business adapts to a devalued Brazilian currency and a slower development schedule for the new tanker-transport.
The flight on 26 October at Embraer’s test centre in Gaviao Pexioto, Brazil, ends an eight-month hiatus caused by a fiscal crisis in Brasilia. As the Real currency has devalued by 50% since the beginning of the year, the government had slowed payments to Embraer on a host of projects, but none bigger than the KC-390. Last July, Embraer announced signing an agreement with the Brazilian air force that extended the KC-390 development schedule by a year, with entry into service beginning in 2018. The agreement also included provisions to reimburse Embraer more than $370 million owed by the air force on the KC-390 so far. Meanwhile, company officials have also restructured the division to remain profitable despite sharply lower revenues as shown on the balance sheet, which is converted to suddenly much more valuable US dollars.