LONDON --- Saab has waded into the political spat surrounding the British government’s decision to enter sole-source negotiations with Boeing for a multibillion-dollar purchase of new airborne early warning (AEW) radar aircraft.
In a letter to the UK defense select committee, the Swedish defense company said it disagreed with the UK defense ministry’s assertion that it had examined alternative platforms before announcing on Oct. 3 that it was beginning negotiations with Boeing on a potential purchase of the Australian Wedgetail version of the Boeing E-7, an AEW radar-carrying derivative of the 737-700 narrowbody airliner.
Andrew Walton, head of Saab UK, said Royal Air Force and materiel agency officials had approached Saab for classified data on Saab’s Erieye radar. But after clearance was given by the Swedish government to provide the data, delivery was declined, he wrote.
“We cannot support the assertion that Erieye’s performance has been analyzed,” Walton told the committee. (end of excerpt)
Click here for the full story, on the Aviation Week website.
Click here for Saab’s letter to HCDC (5 PDF pages), on the UK Parliament website.