Canada has signed its biggest military purchase deal ever with the US valued USD 9 billion to buy 65 Lockheed Martin’s F-35 Lightning II fighter jets.
The new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets will replace Canada’s fleet of CF-18s. The delivery of the planes is set to start in 2016. But the contract with Lockheed Martin is proving controversial. It was signed without a competitive bidding process. Canada’s opposition has pledged to freeze the deal if it comes to power.
Canada’s purchase is in line with the US government’s plan to purchase about 2,400 jets for more than $300 billion for the Air Force, the Marine Corps and the Navy. The delivery of the aircrafts is set to start in 2016.
Besides Canada, seven other US allies (Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Turkey, Australia, Denmark and Norway) have announced plans to buy F-35s.
The deal was signed without a competitive bidding process. Canada’s opposition has pledged to freeze the deal if it comes to power.