On Jul. 30, 2020 the US government submitted the Request for Proposal (RFP) response for the Lockheed Martin built F-35 to Canada in support of their Future Fighter Capability Project.
Canada has been a valued partner since the inception of the Joint Strike Fighter competition. Canadian industry plays an integral role in the global F-35 supply chain and has gained significant technical expertise over the past 15-plus year involvement in the F-35 production.
“We are extremely proud of our longstanding partnership with Canada, which has played a key role in the F-35’s development,” said Greg Ulmer, F-35 Program executive vice president, in the company news release. “The 5th Generation F-35 would transform the Royal Canadian Air Force fleet and deliver the capabilities necessary to safeguard Canadian skies. The F-35’s unique mix of stealth and sensor technology will enable the Royal Canadian Air Force to modernize their contribution to NORAD operations, ensure Arctic sovereignty and meet increasingly sophisticated global threats.”
The program will continue to bring manufacturing and production opportunities to Canada, with an estimated 150,000 jobs supported over the life of the program. The F-35 program connects Canadian industry to a global supply chain supporting a growing fleet that will deliver more than 3,200 aircraft and delivers sustainment well past 2060.
Besides Lockheed Martin’s F-35, Boeing submitted the F/A-18EF Super Hornet Block III while Saab submitted its Gripen E.
A contract award is expected in 2021-22 and deliveries to begin in 2025.
Then, on Oct. 19, 2015 the Liberal Party of Canada under Justin Trudeau won the country federal election and in early Jun. 2016 decided to buy the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet as more affordable alternative to the F-35.
But Canada’s government cancelled a planned $2 billion purchase of 18 F/A-18 Super Hornet fighters because of a decision by Boeing to launch a trade challenge against Canadian planemaker Bombardier, which the U.S. giant accuses of dumping airliners on the domestic American market.
Photo credit: Lockheed Martin
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