German Chancellor Angela Merkel has endorsed the idea of a joint European aircraft carrier.
The idea was suggested by her party’s leader, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer.
Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, the politician that succeeded Merkel last year as leader of the governing Christian Democratic Union in Germany, made the proposal in a weekend response to the French President’s proposals for European reform.
Germany and France are already working together on a future European combat aircraft.
“The next step could be to start on the symbolic project of building a common European aircraft carrier” to underline what the EU calls its global security role.
Merkel said in March this year, according to Reuters, that “it’s right and good that we have such equipment on the European side, and I’m happy to work on it”.
It is currently unclear if this is a proposal for a jointly operated vessel or a common class, the latter however appears the least likely due to the cost.
In October 2018, the French Ministry of Defence launched an 18-month study for €40 million for the eventual future replacement of the French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle beyond 2030.
A decision for the new carrier is scheduled to take place beyond 2025, and the future carrier is to remain in service until beyond 2080 and one of the proposals is pictured above.