CF-18 Replacement Project

Context

A modern fighter jet fleet is essential for defending Canada and Canadian sovereignty – especially in our northern skies. The current CF-18 fighter fleet is now more than 30 years old and is down from 138 aircraft to 77.

Updates

Updates

The Government of Canada has announced that it will launch, within its current mandate, an open and transparent competition to replace the aging fleet of CF-18 fighter aircraft. This competition will ensure that the government gets the right aircraft for our women and men in uniform – at the right price – while maximizing economic benefits to Canadians. In addition, Canada will immediately explore the acquisition of 18 new Super Hornet aircraft to supplement the CF-18s until the permanent replacement arrives. The Government will enter into discussions with the U.S. Government and Boeing regarding use of these jets for an interim period of time.

FAQ

FAQ

Q1. Why does Canada need a fighter aircraft?

A1. Canada requires a fighter aircraft to contribute to the safety and security of Canadians and protect the sovereignty of one of the largest expanses of airspace in the world.  Canada’s future fighter must be able to deter attacks and guard our vast landmass, maritime approaches and airspace. We must also remain a dependable ally in support of international commitments.

Q2. What is the Government doing to replace the CF-18s?

A2. The Government of Canada will launch, within its current mandate, an open and transparent competition to replace the legacy fleet of CF-18 fighter aircraft. This competition will ensure that the Government gets the right aircraft for our women and men in uniform – at the right price – while maximizing economic benefits to Canadians.

In addition, Canada will immediately explore the acquisition of 18 new Super Hornet aircraft to supplement the CF-18s until the permanent replacement arrives. The Government will enter into discussions with the U.S. Government and Boeing regarding use of these jets for an interim period of time.

Q3. Why did the Government choose the Super Hornet for its interim fleet?

A3. The Super Hornet has been in production for some time. Discussions with the U.S. Government and Boeing will determine if they can provide the interim solution at a cost, time, level of capability that are acceptable to Canada. We need an aircraft as quickly as possible that can reduce reliance on our legacy fleet and help fully meet our NORAD and NATO obligations.

Q4. Why did the Government choose 18 aircraft for its interim fleet?

A4. In order to meet both of Canada’s commitments to NORAD and NATO on a daily basis, analysis by the Royal Canadian Air Force showed that 18 interim fighters would be required.

Q5. How much will each fleet cost? How many permanent fleet replacement aircraft will the Government buy? 

A5. Details will be informed by Defence Policy Review and Budget 2017 decisions. 

Q6. How will the Government conduct the process for the permanent fleet replacement?

A6. The Government intends to launch an open and transparent competition within this mandate. The Government will develop its purchasing requirements for the aircraft, everything from the number of aircraft needed to defend Canadians and in-service support requirements, to economic benefits to Canada, to the estimated time of delivery. Canada will also undertake industry engagement.

An independent fairness monitor will ensure the competition is open, transparent and fair.

Q7. Which aircraft are being considered for the permanent fleet replacement?

A7. The Government of Canada is committed to an open competition. Any aircraft supplier who meets Canada’s needs is encouraged to participate in the process.

Q8. How will economic benefits to Canada factor into this procurement process?

A8. The Government will quickly establish objectives and a negotiation strategy in order to maximize economic benefits for Canadian industry to create jobs and support innovation.

Q9. When will the last of the existing fleet be retired?

A9. The Government will continue investments and maintenance to both extend the life of the CF-18s and to increase the number of aircraft as early as possible. Individual aircraft will be retired when either their safe structural life has expired or they are no longer required given the delivery of the interim and/or permanent fleet.

Archives

Archives

This web page contains archived information associated with the National Fighter Procurement Secretariat and the acquisition of Canada's next fighter aircraft, which may no longer be current as a result of the introduction of the Government's Seven-Point action Plan in response to the 2012 Spring Report of the Auditor General of Canada. In December 2014 the Secretariat fulfilled its commitments under the Seven-Point Plan and showed transparency in releasing all unclassified reports. The Secretariat is no longer in operation.  As such, information on this page may no longer be current.

Over the summer of 2016 Canada consulted governments and industry in allied and partner countries to gather the most current, up-to-date, and accurate information to make an informed decision on the path forward to a future fighter fleet. The Government collected information on issues such as costs, delivery times, interoperability with the U.S., the status of development, and potential benefits for Canadian industry.

If you have difficulty viewing these documents, please e-mail DND.WebPosting-PublicationWeb.MDN@forces.gc.ca for assistance or to obtain an alternative format.

National Fighter Procurement Secretariat (NFPS) (H4)


National Defence - CF-18 Replacement Project


Public Works and Government Services - National Fighter Procurement Secretariat (NFPS)


Treasury Board


Industry Canada

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