Canada selects the Lockheed Martin F-35On March 28, the Canadian Government announced that it had selected the USA’s F-35 as the RCAF’s next fighter.F-35 - Courtesy of Lockheed MartinAccording to a government press release, “The Government of Canada has reached another milestone in the competitive process to purchase 88 advanced fighter jets for the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF), which will ensure the requirements of the RCAF are met while also providing value for Canadians, generating high-value jobs in Canada as well as further growth for the Canadian aerospace and defence sector for decades to come.”

It continued, “Following a rigorous evaluation of proposals, the Government of Canada today announced it will now enter into the finalization phase of the procurement process with the top-ranked bidder, the United States government and Lockheed Martin, for the F-35 fighter jet. This procurement represents the most significant investment in the RCAF in more than 30 years. It is essential for protecting the safety and security of Canadians, it will enhance our Arctic sovereignty, it will ensure we are equipped to better defend North America and it will help make sure we continue to meet our NATO and NORAD obligations well into the future.”
Canada has been investing in the Joint Strike Fighter Programme since 1997, but in recent years, the F-35 has had to compete with the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and Sweden’s Saab Gripen to secure its place in the RCAF. While evaluating the F-35, the government awarded 4 Wing Cold Lake and 3 Wing Bagotville contracts for infrastructure upgrades to take delivery of their new fifth-generation fighters. According to the release, the Canadian government is hoping to have F-35s delivered to the RCAF as early as 2025.