Boeing said their offer to sell fighter jets to Canada did not meet Ottawa’s requirements

F / A-18 undergoes updates and maintenance at Boeing’s plant in St. Louis.Ted Shaffrey / The Associated Press

The federal government has told Boeing that their offer to replace Canada’s aging CF-18s with a new fleet of the US company’s Super Hornet fighter jets did not meet the requirements.

Three sources from industry and government say the message was delivered on Wednesday when the two other companies competing for the $ 19 billion contract – US defense giant Lockheed Martin and Swedish firm Saab – were told they met government requirements.

Companies had been ordered to show that their fighter jets were capable of meeting military requirements for missions at home and abroad, but also winning the contract would result in significant economic benefits for Canada.

The news that one of the two U.S. companies competing for the contract did not meet one or more of these requirements is the latest twist in what has already been a long and often unpredictable road toward replacing Canada’s CF-18.

Many observers had seen Super Boeing and the F-35 as the only real competition, especially after two other European companies dropped out of the race.

While Boeing’s failure to meet the requirements appears to disqualify the Super Hornet from the competition, leaving only Lockheed Martin’s F-35 and Saab’s Gripen fighters in place, none of the companies have been told whether they are still inside or out.

The three sources were all given anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss these issues in public.

A Boeing spokesman said the company would reserve a comment pending official announcement from the government.

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