World

December 14, 2012

Canada to consider other planes besides F-35

Canada is considering buying fighter jets other than U.S.-made F-35’s because of escalating costs associated with Lockheed Martin’s troubled Joint Strike Fighter program, the country’s defense minister said Wednesday.

Defense Minister Peter MacKay said the government needs to ensure a balance between military and taxpayer interests.

MacKay said Canada needs to have all viable options on the table to replace the current fleet of 1980s-vintage CF-18s, which the government says will reach the end of their projected service life around 2020.

He reiterated that Canada wants to buy 65 jets for about $9 billion. But escalating costs and delays have dogged the F-35, which is now the most expensive U.S. Department of Defense procurement program ever.

A KPMG report says the lifetime cost of Canada owning 65 F-35’s is estimated at $45.8 billion over 42 years.

MacKay had previously said it would buy the F-35, but the government never signed a binding contract. The government has since come under pressure because of ballooning costs and because other bids were not considered. An independent panel will consider a new range of options.

The government acknowledged Dec. 12 it could still buy the F-35. Other planes that could be considered include Boeing’s Super Hornet or the European consortium made Eurofighter Typhoon jet.

Japan has said it may cancel its plans to buy dozens of the F-35s and Australia has said that to cut costs it is pushing back delivery of most of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighters. The Netherlands has also said it will trim its order.

The next-generation fighter is set to become the centerpiece of U.S. and allied air forces. Canada is a funding partner in developing the Joint Strike Fighter. Most of the funding comes from the United States, while Australia, Turkey, Britain, Italy, Norway, Denmark and the Netherlands are also funding partners.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

F-16 crashes in Bavaria

A U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 480th Fighter Squadron from Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, crashed Aug. 11 at approximately 9:38 a.m. near Engelmannreuth in the county of Bayreuth, Germany. The incident happened during a training flight at U.S. Army Garrison Bavaria in Grafenwoehr, Bavaria, Germany. The pilot safely ejected. U.S. military...
 
 

Japan annual defense paper shows heightened worry over China

Japan emphasized China as a threat in escalating regional tensions in this year’s annual defense report as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government tries to convince the public of the need to pass legislation to give Japan’s military a greater role. The report, approved July 21 by the Cabinet, was delayed for more than a week...
 
 

Constitutional questions grow over Japan PM’s military plans

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s pledge to the U.S. to increase Japan’s military contribution internationally is facing more questions about potential conflicts with the nation’s pacifist Constitution. Opposition lawmakers demanded answers from key Cabinet members at a hearing June 10, after three prominent constitution experts–including one chosen by Abe’s rul...
 

 

Japan, Philippines to talk about transfer of military goods

Japan and the Philippines agreed June 4 to start talks on transferring Japanese military hardware and technology to the Southeast Asian country trying to upgrade its defenses. Tokyo eased restrictions on exports of military equipment and technology last year as part of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push to expand Japan’s military role abroad. Under a...
 
 

U.S., India move forward on joint military research projects

After several years of bureaucratic delays, the U.S. and India are moving ahead with two joint research projects for the military that officials hope will set the stage for greater defense cooperation in the years ahead. Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar signed a defense agreement June 4, as part of...
 
 

Saudi Arabia becomes world’s biggest defense importer

Saudi Arabia has passed India to become the world’s biggest arms importer last year as concerns about Iran’s ambitions increase tensions in the Middle East. Saudi spending rose 54 percent to $6.5 billion last year, while India imported $5.8 billion, according to data released Sunday by IHS, a leading analyst of the global arms trade....
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>