Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Jercs: Praise the Lord and power the props/No Chinook contract until end of 2008

About, I must say, freaking time:
The air force's $4.6-billion purchase of the newest version of the Hercules transport plane will be made final Wednesday, after months of delays, wrangling and hand-wringing among defence contractors, defence sources said.

More than a year ago, the Conservative government invoked a national security clause in procurement legislation and negotiated exclusively with U.S. defence giant Lockheed Martin to buy 17 C-130J transport planes.

Replacement of the air force's aging C-130E and C-130H fleets was part of a massive rearmament drive launched by former defence minister Gordon O'Connor in 2006 [well, the Liberals had actually decided for all practical purposes to buy the Jerc in November 2005--link at post no longer up].

Defence and industry sources say the contract to buy the aircraft was approved by the federal cabinet last month, just before the aircraft-maker's pricing schedule expired.

The program has been held up over concern about the 20-year, $1.7-billion maintenance portion of the contract.

In addition to building the planes, Lockheed, as prime contractor, would also be responsible for the maintenance contract - something that has upset Canadian defence contractors.

Defence Minister Peter MacKay and Public Works Minister Michael Fortier will announce the purchase Wednesday at a high-profile event at the Ottawa airport, but they will give themselves up to 12 months to negotiate the support deal, said defence insiders.

A senior government official said Public Works has been demanding that 75 per cent of the long-term maintenance work be carried out by Canadian defence contractors. The other 25 per cent can be done by U.S. firms.

"We've negotiated very firmly," said the source.

If Public Works is able to achieve the three-quarters Canadian-based maintenance levels, it will amount to "hundreds of millions of dollars for Canadian companies."

Delivery of the first aircraft is expected within 36 months...

Update: It's official:
Government of Canada awards Tactical Airlift Contract
Now for the pork (apparently not yet divvied up) and politics--bah! humbug!
Under the contract, Lockheed Martin Corp. is required to invest in the Canadian economy, dollar for dollar, what the Government of Canada spends in procuring and maintaining the aircraft over the life of the contract.

“We are continuing to make sure Canada’s aerospace and defence industries obtain maximum benefit so they can build and sustain capacity to support these aircraft over the long-term,” Mr. Fortier said. “Under the in-service support portion, the contractor will be required to spend in Canada 75 per cent of the total cost in direct industrial regional benefits – well above the 60-per-cent ratio negotiated by the previous government for purchases of this magnitude.”..
And note this rather dismal news:
Major Military Procurements

3. Medium- to Heavy-Lift Helicopters (Chinooks)
A Request for Proposal (RFP) will be issued to Boeing by the spring of 2008. Contract award is expected by the end of 2008 [emhasis added]. Under the RFP, Boeing will be required to meet all of the high-level mandatory requirements including delivery of first aircraft 36 months after a contract is awarded. The last aircraft will be delivered within 60 months of contract award...
More pork problems?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

amen bro . . . 36 months to go.

next on the list of kit . . the big honk'n ship aka the JSS.

Maybe the Dutch have a solution for Rick.

" Dutch Plan for Their Largest Naval Ship Ever
Posted by Joris Janssen Lok at 1/15/2008 6:16 AM

The backbone of a modern, 21st-century navy isn't its surface combatants or submarines. It is the large amphibious and/or logistic support ships it can deploy to trouble spots around the world, carrying helicopters, hospital facilities, an embarked landing force, supplies, fuel and a suite of C4I facilities. The Netherlands is planning to build its largest ship ever to be able to do just that.

The new ship is designated the Joint Support Ship (JSS) and will have a displacement of 26,000 tons -- making it a tight fit to squeeze into Den Helder Naval Base."


8:42 p.m., January 15, 2008  

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