Airbus Refuses to Compete for Canadian Fighter Contract


Canada's new fighter jets will not be built by Airbus. The aerospace giant announced Friday, withdraw from the tender at "cost too important."

Airbus announced Friday it was pulling out of competition for the future Canadian contract for 88 fighter aircraft. The company invokes overly demanding security requirements and last-minute changes to the specifications.

This decision could allow Lockheed Martin to win, while the candidates competing for this contract have hinted recently that the Canadian authorities wanted to tip the balance in favor of the F-35 of the American manufacturer.

In a joint statement with the UK Department of Defense, which was supposed to convince Ottawa to equip Typhoon, Airbus says the security requirements imposed a "Too much cost to the platforms" and "The recent major revisions to the Industrial and Technological Benefits (ITR) requirements did not sufficiently value the firm commitments included in Typhoon Canada's offer, which was a major point".

Canada has estimated the contract at C $ 15 to 19 billion (€ 10 to 13 billion).

Canadian Minister of Public Services and Procurement Carla Qualtrough said she respected Airbus' decision, adding that the Ottawa government was committed to fairness in the bidding process.

Canada has been trying unsuccessfully for nearly a decade to replace its aging fleet of F-18s. In 2010, the Conservative government of the day announced its intention to buy 65 F-35s but then canceled its decision.

When they came to power in 2015, the Liberals led by Justin Trudeau announced that they would not buy the F-35, which was considered too expensive, but have moderated their position since then.

Lockheed Martin declined to comment; Boeing and Saab, also potential bidders, did not respond immediately to requests for comments.

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Airbus Refuses to Compete for Canadian Fighter

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