French President Francois Hollande expressed his pride in state-owned naval contractor DCNS winning a huge bid to build a fleet of 12 submarines for Australia, during a press conference in Paris on Tuesday.
Both the German and Japanese governments had been pushing their own bids to win the project valued at AUS$50 billion (US$39 billion/ €34 billion). Having spoken to Hollande the day before, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull officially announced the decision to offer the contract to DCNS earlier on Tuesday.
SOT, Francois Hollande, French President (French): “I had to be here today because this is not a day like any other. Yesterday at approximately 10:45, I want to be precise, a phone call. I receive many during the day but not all of the same worth. This one was from the Australian Prime Minister and he told me that DCNS and therefore France had been chosen to be the partner of Australia in the context of exclusive negotiations. He told me how the competition had been of a particularly high level and that the companies that have been for months making their case had been particularly careful in presenting the best possible bid. We knew that notably there was a Japanese and a German consortium, big companies that are formidable and remarkable, and he told me that it was you, DCNS, France, that were chosen. I felt great pride. I felt proud because this was France, proud also because this was a submarine, 12 in effect, that we had already manufactured, not in this form and not in this proposition, that are today at the service of national defence. I was proud because this is a particularly brilliant technology that you have developed. I was proud because this was the French know-how and French workforce, the innovation and research ability that was recognised, hailed and selected. I was proud because you said, Mr. President, this was a whole team that was mobilised, a whole team to carry out this project and to show that it was different from the others and that it could on all levels satisfy the expectations of our Australian friends.”
Video ID: 20160426-048
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