Peter Hintze, the German aerospace coordinator, indirectly confirms the reservations of the German government: “I believe that in this formation [EADS and BAE Systems remaining separate] Germany's industrial policy interests to sustain a strong aerospace value chain from research to development and industrial production is served the best.” German Defense Minister Thomas de Maiziere, upon hearing EADS's comments that Germany was responsible for the breakdown, said: “I don't agree.”
U.K. Defense Minister Philip Hammond says the deal was “too difficult” to achieve when all different interests had to be taken into account.
French President Francois Hollande says governments should not be held responsible for the breakdown of the talks. “That is a decision made by the companies,” he says, noting that France would continue to support EADS. France and the U.K. appeared to have come closer to an agreement. Sources say France would have been prepared to limit its ownership in the company, a key prerequisite for the U.K.'s approval of the deal.
But now, EADS may be facing even stronger government influence than in the past. Recently, Daimler confirmed that it still plans to sell part of its stake in EADS to the German government by the end of the year. In France, a 7.5% stake held by the Lagardere Group is now for sale and with the merger off, the government is again free to pick it up.