Canada will spend $15.2 million on US-manufactured aircraft despite PM Justin Trudeau’s pledge
Officials from Canada announced Monday that Ottawa would only negotiate with Lockheed Martin, the US-based aerospace company for the purchase of 88 F35 aircraft.
The deal has an expected price tag of $19 billion CAD ($15.2 billion USD) with the government characterizing it as a replacement of existing forces rather than an expansion of military spending. It is the culmination of a 12-year process wherein Canada has sought to replace its outdated CF-18 jets.
The Liberal Party of the current Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, which was successful in 2015 to remove Stephen Harper, Conservative Prime Minister, from power, campaigned against an controversial 2010 agreement to purchase F-35s. Instead, it promised to pursue other options “open and transparent competition”Canada’s air force is being updated
“They clung to an aircraft that does not work and is far from working,”Trudeau was not shy about criticizing the Conservatives in 2016 regarding their F-35 acquisition plan. His government nevertheless eventually chose Lockheed Martin as preferred bidder, with Procurement Minister Filomena Tassi claiming on Monday “we’re in a different place today.”
Washington, Lockheed Martin (US-based arms dealer) have lauded F-35 as the world’s most advanced fighter plane. But the F-35 project is a huge financial burden for US taxpayers. They have paid for delays, mishaps and costly overruns. The plane has still been bought by many allies of the United States.
Berlin made the announcement earlier this month that it would replace its Tornado fighter fleet with up to 35 F-35 stealth planes from the United States. The local press reported that the move was an “anonymous” decision. “open secret”Germany has to have modern aircraft for carrying the US nuclear bombs that are kept in its country in the event of war.
Finland has also signed a multibillion-dollar contract to acquire 64 F-35 planes from F-35 to replace its Hornet fleet. It rejected other aircraftmakers like Eurofighter Typhoon (UK) and Dassault Rafale (France).
Several European nations pledged significant increases in defense spending during the Russian military campaign against Ukraine. Moscow attacked its neighbor in late February, following a seven-year standoff over Ukraine’s failure to implement the terms of the Minsk agreements, and Russia’s eventual recognition of the Donbass republics in Donetsk and Lugansk. Russia now demands that Ukraine declares itself neutral and vows to not join NATO’s military bloc. Kiev claims that the Russian invasion was unprovoked. It also denied that it planned to take the republics forcefully.
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