Beechcraft today issued a statement regarding the ruling by the U.S. Government Accountability Office on Beechcraft’s petition for further review of the U.S. Air Force’s award of the Light Air Support contract to Brazil-based Embraer.
“It is deeply distressing that the Air Force selected a more expensive, less capable, foreign-manufactured airplane with weapons and systems unfamiliar to, and outside the control of, the United States military. We have known that the requirements for this procurement were written to favor the competition’s aircraft. During this protest, we learned that the GAO’s review looks only at whether the Air Force followed its process, but not whether the process itself was actually correct or appropriate. We question whether the Embraer aircraft with its foreign-made weapons can be certified to U.S. military standards in time to provide the mission-capable aircraft per the contract, the company said.
It is now time for Congress to step in and put an end to this flawed acquisition process and limit the purchase of the Brazilian aircraft to only that of the Afghanistan requirement covered by the first delivery order of the LAS contract, the statement added.
Beechcraft remains confident that the AT-6, which was rated “Exceptional” by the Air Force, was the better choice for LAS and is the best aircraft for U.S. partner nations in need of light attack aircraft. The company is certain that future procurements, including those run by other governments, will validate this rating and result in the selection of the AT-6 for counterinsurgency and irregular warfare missions, it concluded.