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U.S. NAVY AUTHORIZES McDONNELL DOUGLAS TO PROCEED WITH PRODUCTION OF SIX HARRIER II PLUS AIRCRAFT

 U.S. NAVY AUTHORIZES McDONNELL DOUGLAS TO PROCEED
 WITH PRODUCTION OF SIX HARRIER II PLUS AIRCRAFT
 ST. LOUIS, June 10, 1992 -- The U.S. Navy has given McDonnell Douglas (NYSE: MD) authorization to proceed with the production of six radar-equipped AV-8B Harrier II Plus aircraft funded late last year by the Desert Storm supplemental funding bill.
 The authorization is an important milestone for the company in terms of international sales of the aircraft. The authorization means McDonnell Douglas Harrier production lines will remain open an additional three months, which reduces the chance of a costly line shutdown until international orders come through. It also helps McDonnell Douglas secure the price of aircraft parts that would have to be purchased to build new aircraft.
 McDonnell Douglas is anticipating international orders for the radar-equipped Harrier -- known as the Harrier II Plus -- from Italy and Spain. If the countries choose to exercise their options for a total of 30 aircraft, McDonnell Douglas Harrier production lines would remain open through 1995. The line is currently scheduled to close in 1994.
 The six aircraft the Navy has authorized McDonnell Douglas to produce will be the first to be manufactured under a Harrier II Plus development program among the United States, Italy and Spain. The three countries teamed up in 1990 to integrate the Hughes APG-65 radar into the AV-8B Harrier II, which is flown by the U.S. Marine Corps and Italian and Spanish navies. McDonnell Douglas is finalizing an agreement with Spain that will lead to the three countries co-producing Harrier II Plus aircraft.
 The AV-8B program has set the standard in military aircraft international collaboration since the program's inception in 1979. At that time, McDonnell Douglas and British Aerospace reached an agreement to develop the AV-8B. The Harrier II Plus program collaboration with Italy and Spain further extends that strong international partnership.
 -0- 6/10/92
 /CONTACT: Janet Lockwood of McDonnell Aircraft Company, 314-232-1520/
 (MD) CO: McDonnell Douglas; U.S. Navy ST: Missouri IN: ARO SU: CON


CH -- LA011 -- 8701 06/10/92 09:44 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 10, 1992
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