OTTAWA --- The federal government has extended the $19-billion competition to replace Canada’s aging CF-18s by another month because of COVID-19 – one week after it made another multimillion-dollar investment into the development of the F-35 stealth fighter jet.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is presenting numerous challenges for businesses and their work force, including the eligible suppliers for the future fighter capability project,” Public Services and Procurement Canada spokeswoman Stefanie Hamel said in an e-mail Wednesday evening.
“The unprecedented situation has impacted proposal finalization. To support our commitment to conducting an open, fair and transparent competition, the extension will ensure all suppliers are able to submit their most competitive offer to Canada.”
This latest extension – the second this year for the competition – will give the three companies vying for the lucrative contact until the end of July, rather than June 30, to submit their proposals. The winner will be tasked with delivering 88 new jets to the Royal Canadian Air Force. (end of excerpt)
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