The mother of the Federal Reserve in the next step in fighter competition

Federal procurement authorities do not say when Canada will begin the next step in its long-standing process of choosing new fighters.

The federal government announced in December that it had narrowed down its investigation to replace the military’s dilapidated CF-18 with the Lockheed Martin F-35 and the Swedish Saab Gripen.

The government said at the time that decisions would be made in short order whether the government would negotiate with the two companies again or choose the winner altogether.

However, almost four months later, no announcement was made, and there are concerns that Canada’s CF-18 exchange will be further delayed as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine emphasizes the importance of modern military power.

Simon Page, Deputy Minister of Public Services and Procurement of Canada, said the process was “very active and very active” because it was grilled by the Parliamentary Commission on Tuesday because of no decision.

Page and other federal officials are optimistic that the deal with the winning bidder will be signed by the end of the year, but did not provide details on the reason for the delay or when the next step decision will come.

“If you answer the question, we will lean in one direction,” Page told members of the House of Commons Government Steering Committee. “And to protect the integrity of the process, I don’t want to answer that at this time.”

Also, it was not immediately clear who would ultimately decide whether to proceed with the next round of negotiations between Lockheed Martin and Saab or to choose the final winner.

Kelly McCawley, a member of the Conservation Committee, expressed concern that it was not clear what was happening in the procurement of fighters.

The federal government plans to purchase 88 new fighters at an estimated cost of up to $ 19 billion, with the first planes scheduled for delivery by 2025. The final aircraft was scheduled to be delivered in 2032, but then in 2033.

The Boeing Super Hornet was also running, but was kicked out of the competition in December.

The success of this year’s selection of new fighters will be the culmination of more than a decade of stop-start efforts characterized by mismanagement and political controversy under two consecutive federal governments.

By Lee Berthiaume

Canadian press