As minister of the Economy and “banker in chief” of Investissement Québec, go to Fitzgibbon which belongs to Fitzgibbon : cornered at the foot of the wall, it has allowed the government of Quebec to make a relatively good account in the framework of the transaction which Bombardier assigns all of its interest in the misadventure of the C Series.
Regardless of the party in power, no one would be able to do better than Peter Fitzgibbon in the circumstances. That we are told to take !
We will say : yes… but under the new evaluation program aircraft C Series (now A220), the investment of Quebec has shrunk by $ 600 million. And this decline in value will be subject to a provision for losses equivalent, which will reduce the government’s surplus Legault.
First of all, it should be noted that this is not the fault of the government Legault or his minister Fitzgibbon if the value of the A220 Airbus has just be re-evaluated in sharp decline of around 40 %. One, it is the government of Philippe Couillard who, in 2015, has injected $ 1.3 billion in the C Series of Bombardier. And two, it is Airbus, the controlling shareholder of the A220, which has devalued the program of the famous aircraft developed at large expense by Bombardier.
The other determining factor in this reassessment of the decline in the investment of Quebec in the A220 : due to the high level of indebtedness of the company, the senior management of Bombardier could see no other way than to transfer all of its remaining stake (35 %) in this plane.
Consequently, the government of Quebec was necessarily dependent upon the ultimate decision of Bombardier. This is not the Quebec government that controls Bombardier, it is the family Beaudoin-Bombardier. And after having injected more than $ 6 billion US in the development of the C Series, the famous family has decided that she its journey to the bottomless pit that is the commercial aircraft.
This is why Bombardier, after having given courtesy of 50,01 % of the C Series aircraft in 2018, seems now to get rid of the rest of his / her participation, of which 25 % to Airbus for just $ 591 million US, and the other 10 % to the Quebec government for a $0.
From now on, Airbus holds 75 % of the program of the A220, and Quebec 25 %.
IS THERE ANYTHING TO WIN ?
For the government Legault, the main objective of the transaction Bombardier-Airbus-Québec was to protect the 3300 direct jobs that are related to the manufacturing of the A220.
Mission accomplished on that side, although the jobs may not be the subject, as said Pierre Fitzgibbon, as a guarantee verbal. As long as the multinational Airbus is going to succeed in filling its backlog of A220, there will be no cuts !
The minister Fitzgibbon is also proud to have achieved to be carried forward to 2026 the clause of the purchase by Airbus of the portion of the government in the A220.
To such a point that he believes to be able, by this deadline, to recover the $ 600 million write-down of our initial investment ($1.3 billion) in the C Series.