OTTAWA— The federal Generous government has inked the sole-source deal with Quebec aerospace firm Bombardier to purchase two new Opposition jets to replace half the particular Canadian Armed Forces’ current executive aircraft fleet.
The CA$105-million agreement follows recent warnings through defense officials that 2 of the military’ s 4 existing aircraft would not be allowed to fly in many nations within a few years because of out-of-date technology.
Additionally, it comes after Bombardier announced Fri that it was slashing 2, five hundred jobs from its aviation department as demand for personal jets has plummeted because of the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Yet the decision to purchase the 2 new Challenger 650s can stoke criticism as governors general, prime ministers plus cabinet ministers have been consistently accused in the past of utilizing the small private jets because personal flying taxis.
The Department associated with National Defense announced the offer with Bombardier on Sunday, saying the new planes together with a supply of spare parts and preliminary training for military personnel is going to be delivered this summer.
“ We are really very happy to be able to announce that we’ re going to purchase 2 new Challenger 650s through Bombardier, ” said the particular Defense Department’ s mouthpiece minister, Jody Thomas.
“ It was a great confluence of timing. We all needed the planes using the regulatory changes. ”
Men sit next to the Bombardier Challenger 650 company jet before the start of the 2017 Asian Business Aviation Meeting and Exhibition (ABACE) from Shanghai’ s Hongqiao Airport terminal on April 10, 2017. (Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images)
Due to a lot more congested airspace and the use of newer digital technologies such as GPS in air-traffic control, countries around the world are usually phasing in new standards needing modern navigation systems on all of the aircraft.
Whilst two Challengers purchased from the federal government in the early 2000s have relatively modern techniques, the two Challengers purchased within the 1980s don’ t satisfy the new standards.
Ottawa bought itself a while when it inked an agreement keep away from that lets the two old jets continue to fly in the usa, but other countries start to bring in the same requirements. Canada will implement the particular standards between 2021 plus 2023.
Jones defended the decision to purchase the particular planes from Bombardier with no competition. The new planes resemble the military’ s current Challengers, she said, that will allow them to be seamlessly incorporated into the Royal Canadian Surroundings Force.
“ It made sense to purchase Canadian capability when there is a good innate Canadian capability, ” she said. “ That planes actually will squeeze into the fleet very easily. Exactly the same technicians. The pilots can fly both types of aeroplanes. ”
Jones denied the purchase amounted to a handout to Bombardier as it faces massive layoffs. Rather, she said the federal government saw an opportunity as the 2 planes were “ in the line” and ready to be purchased.
While on-line searches suggest the heading rate for a Challenger 650 is around CA$40 million, Jones said the full $105-million agreement includes spare parts and instruction.
“ We have been not overpaying, ” the lady said. “ It is more the purchase of the aircraft. … And so it’ h too easy to just Search engines a number. This is the in-totality cost. ”
The particular Challengers, which can carry 9 passengers, have long been attached with controversy, with opposition events of all stripes painting any kind of use of the jets as improper and wasteful.
Stephen Harper’ s Traditional government, which was accused associated with excessive use of the Challengers, produced a point of retiring 2 of the aircraft in 2014 as a cost-cutting measure. The particular Tories said at the time the fact that move would save CA$1. 5 million per year.
Previous governments possess said the aircraft are expected because the prime minister plus governor general are not permitted, for security reasons, to utilize commercial aircraft. Defense authorities note the Challengers double by the military to transport mature officers and troops in certain circumstances, as well as for medical evacuations.
The airplane have also been used to carry items and personal protective equipment across the country during the COVID-19 problems, Thomas said. They also ferried military personnel to European countries after a helicopter crashed from the coast of Greece within April.
“ The Air Force uses these types of planes every day on behalf of the particular Canadian Armed Forces, ” the girl said. “ Taking associates of the Royal Canadian Navy blue after the Cyclone crash, that’ s not political. That’ s work. And these would be the right planes to do that type of work. ”
By Lee Berthiaume