French PM opens Paris Air Show

By AFP

July 15, 2010 Updated Jun 15, 2009 at 8:01 AM CDT

French Prime Minister Francois Fillon on Monday officially opened the Paris Air Show, held this year under a cloud of dismal financial prospects for the air industry.

Flanked by Defence Minister Herve Morin, Fillon cut the tape on the week-long event under beating rain, before making a whistlestop tour of the site north of Paris including the stand of the European Space Agency.

The puzzling June 1 crash of an Air France Airbus has joined with a bleak economic outlook to cast a pall over the biennial exposition at Le Bourget, which this year marks its 48th edition and its 100th anniversary.

Aviation industry executives and analysts foresee few blockbuster orders emerging from the show.

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