Canada invests another $54M into F-35 as Boeing hedges on fighter competition

OTTAWA — Canada has quietly paid another $54 million toward development of the F-35 stealth fighter, bringing its total investment in the controversial project to roughly a half a billion dollars over the last 20 years.

The government is consulting fighter-jet makers, including U.S. aerospace giant Boeing, before launching a formal competition early next year to decide on a replacement for the air force’s aging CF-18s.

The annual F-35 payment was made to the U.S. military earlier this month, the Department of National Defence said and will keep Canada at the table as one of nine partners in the fighter jet project for the next year.

Staying in the program has advantages, as partners can compete for billions of dollars in contracts associated with building and maintaining the F-35. They also get a discount when purchasing the plane.

Boeing officials said Wednesday that the company remains on the fence about whether its Super Hornet will participate in the Canadian fighter competition because of enduring questions about how the government will run it.

One concern is a new provision the government announced last year that aims to make it more difficult for companies that are deemed to be hurting the Canadian economy to win defence contracts.

The measure was announced at the height of Boeing’s bitter dispute with Canadian rival Bombardier, which has since been tossed out by the U.S. International Trade Commission. Boeing opted not to appeal the decision.

“We want to evaluate what the requirements are and the evaluation criteria,” said Jim Barnes, business development director for Boeing Defense, Space and Security, told reporters on the sidelines of the Cansec arms show in Ottawa.

“And it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out there’s one new evaluation criteria that we certainly have to understand before we provide a proposal.”

Just Posted

Scares and chills await at haunted house in Red Deer

Zed Haunted House helps raise money for Boys and Girls Club of Red Deer District

PHOTO: Renewable Energy Fair at Red Deer College

The Renewable Energy Fair and Workshops event was held at Red Deer… Continue reading

PHOTOS: Red Deer College Queens host third annual Pink in the Rink game

Queens raised $12,035 for the Central Alberta Cancer Centre.

PHOTOS: The Mustard Seed CEO speaks at Seeds of Hope Gala in Red Deer

The first-ever Seeds of Hope Gala was held at the Red Deer… Continue reading

Person airlifted to hospital after collision near Innisfail

One person was airlifted to hospital after a serious collision west of… Continue reading

WATCH: Make-A-Wish grants Star Wars loving teen’s wish

The Make-A-Wish Foundation granted Anakin Suerink’s wish in Red Deer Saturday afternoon

Turkey to reveal details of probe into Khashoggi’s killing

ISTANBUL — In a sign of growing pressure on Saudi Arabia, Turkey… Continue reading

Utah truck driver is jailed without bond after crash kills 6

HEBER, Utah — A man suspected of driving under the influence remained… Continue reading

A ragged, growing army of migrants resumes march toward US

TAPACHULA, Mexico — A ragged army of Honduran migrants streamed through southern… Continue reading

Postal workers to begin strikes in 4 Canadian cities Monday if deal not reached

OTTAWA — The union representing 50,000 Canada Post employees says it will… Continue reading

Migrant caravan swells to 5,000, resumes advance toward US

CIUDAD HIDALGO, Mexico — Despite Mexican efforts to stop them at the… Continue reading

“I don’t feel real”: Mental stress mounting after Michael

PANAMA CITY, Fla. — Amy Cross has a hard time explaining the… Continue reading

Toronto residents set to vote Monday on the next four years of civic leaders

Toronto’s municipal election campaign, marked by unprecedented provincial interference, ends Monday when… Continue reading

Former PQ minister Lise Payette remembered as role model for female politicians

MONTREAL — Members from across Quebec’s political spectrum gathered at a downtown… Continue reading

Most Read