Boeing Loses Super Hornet Deal With Canada To Second-Hand Australian Fighter Jets

Boeing F-18's in formation over northern Iraq

Instead, the Liberal government will announce next week it intends to acquire a used fleet of older Australia F-18 jets, the same kind of plane Canada now operates, said the sources, who asked not to be identified because of the sensitivity of the situation. According to the U.S. firm, its commercial and defense operations in Canada support more than 17,000 Canadian jobs.

"If Canada kicks Boeing out, I think that will be deeply unfortunate for us both".

Canada was looking to buy the Boeing aircraft as a placeholder for its fleet until a competition in 2019 to replace its ageing CF-18 jets. It would be a deeply unfortunate outcome.

Ottawa says Bombardier is the latest victim of Donald Trump administration's trade policies, seeking to impose stiffer import penalties on a number of Canadian industries that Washington accuses of receiving government subsidies.

Canadian defense sources say the air force - seeking to maintain close ties with its US counterpart - has long preferred a USA jet, which would narrow the race to the Super Hornet or Lockheed Martin Corp's (LMT) F-35 stealth fighter.

A Canadian delegation travelled to Australia in August to inspect the used aircraft.

Canadian officials participating in the NAFTA talks criticized the Commerce Department's tariff decision, with Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland saying Canada "strongly disagrees" with the U.S. probes into its aerospace industry.

The final ruling in the case is expected next year, but the relationship between Boeing and Canada has nosedived since. At the time, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his top ministers said Ottawa would not do business with Boeing as long as it was engaged in a dispute with Bombardier.

The Canadian government announced in 2016 it would purchase 18 planes from Boeing. "Unfortunately, I think they're taking advantage of a [political] context that's favourable to them".

The move underlines Ottawa's anger at a decision by Boeing to launch a trade challenge against Canadian planemaker Bombardier Inc (BBDb.TO), which the USA giant accuses of dumping airliners on the American market. It has been the standard line in Ottawa for months that Boeing, having failed to act as a trusted or valued partner, has effectively been shut out of any new federal contracts.

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