Saab’s bid for Canada’s Future Fighter Capability Project (FFCP) intensifies with the Swedish company putting together a ‘Gripen for Canada Team’ which includes leading Canadian aerospace companies like IMP Aerospace & Defence, CAE, Peraton Canada, and GE Aviation.
“Over the past two years, Saab and the Swedish Government have been encouraged by Canada’s open and transparent competition to replace its fighter fleet. Today, we are delighted to announce the Gripen for Canada Team. We have assembled a dynamic roster of innovative leaders within Canada’s aerospace industry, across multiple regions, to offer the best solution for Canada’s future fighter,” said Jonas Hjelm, senior vice-president and head of Business Area Aeronautics.
The RCAF (Royal Canadian Air Force) had issued the RFP (Request for Proposals) back in October 2018 to acquire new fighter planes to replace the existing Boeing CF-18A/B Hornet fleet for which Gripen E/F was shortlisted. The Saab offer that was announced on March 2nd, 2020, includes a comprehensive proposal to deliver high-quality industrial and technological benefits along with 88 Gripen fighters.
“Saab is committed to securing long-term relationships in Canada that will create a significant number of highly-skilled, sustainable jobs for Canadians within domestic and international supply chain,” Hjelm further adds.
Besides technology transfer, Saab can also offer the integration of U.S. based and other non-Saab equipment with Gripen E so that it is interoperable with American forces. And since Gripen is designed specifically for operations in extreme weather conditions, it gives the Gripen offer a leg up on other competitors.
According to a Saab report, Canadians and Swedes are very much alike. ‘We are both hard-working, progressive thinkers with a shared love of the outdoors and (of course) hockey, not to mention exceptionally advanced aerospace sectors, each with a proud legacy of producing superior aircraft. Combining Swedish innovation with Canadian ingenuity, Gripen will be built for, with, by and in Canada,’ the report says.
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