Ottawa has written to the U.S. government on Tuesday outlining what it needs in the Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet jets it is planning to buy and what type of economic benefits Canada expects in return.
Canada has been exploring the potential acquisition of new Super Hornet aircraft to supplement the current fleet until an open and transparent competition can be completed to replace Canada’s legacy CF-18 fleet. Over the course of the last few months, Government of Canada officials have been meeting with United States (U.S.) government officials, and with Boeing, on a regular basis to discuss meeting this interim need, Public Services and Procurement Canada said in a press release Tuesday.
In a Letter of Request submitted to the U.S. government, Canada outlined its requirements on capabilities, schedule and economic benefits for 18 Super Hornet aircraft.
“The Letter of Request to the U.S. government is an important step that outlines our requirements on capabilities, schedule and economic benefits for 18 Super Hornets. This should address the interim needs of the Canadian Armed Forces until the permanent replacement fleet is in place and operational. Our government is committed to leveraging the procurement to ensure our women and men in uniform get the equipment they need, while maximizing economic benefits for Canadians,” said The Hon. Judy M. Foote, Minister of Public Services and Procurement.
Following receipt of this letter, the U.S. Department of Defense will engage Boeing and other suppliers to develop an official proposal. This process includes the U.S. government’s notification to its Congress about the potential sale of Super Hornets to Canada.
As early as fall 2017, Canada expects to receive a response from the U.S. government. The proposal will be reviewed to determine if the U.S. government can provide the interim solution at a cost, schedule, level of capability and economic value acceptable to Canada. If this process is successful, Canada could enter into a formal agreement with the U.S. government for the interim aircraft and associated elements of in-service support as early as the end of 2017 or the beginning of 2018.