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Brazil close to jet fighter decision: minister

Brazil close to jet fighter decision: minister

Published: 01 Apr 2012 07:21 GMT+02:00
Updated: 01 Apr 2012 07:21 GMT+02:00

Brazil is in the "final chapters" of making a decision to award a lucrative jet fighter deal, the defence minister Celso Amorim said on Saturday.

Amorim indicated that the decision could be expected within a few months.

Swedish manufacturer Saab's Gripen jet fighter is up against the Rafale fighter, made by French firm Dassault Aviation and US aviation giant Boeing's F/A-18 Super Hornet for a tender from Brazil to supply 36 multi-role combat aircraft.

The contract has been variously valued at between $4 billion and $7 billion.

"We are entering the final chapters," Amorim told the magazine Istoe. "I have an expectation that the matter can be resolved in this semester (first half of the year)," he said.

A senior Brazilian government source said Monday that President Dilma Rousseff would decide which fighter jet to buy after a visit to Washington in April and the French presidential election in May.

Amorim has previously said June is a likely date for the announcement.

Last year, Brazil delayed a decision on the purchase following a major budget cut, but the jets are needed to beef up the country's air force.

French Prime Minister Francois Fillon said before a visit to Brazil in December last year that he was confident the Rafale could beat off rival bids because the aircraft's technology was superior.

The Rafale was used in the recent war in Libya but the fighter has repeatedly lost out in tenders in countries including Singapore, South Korea, Morocco, and earlier this month, Switzerland.

India has selected the Rafale for its air force, but a deal has not yet been formalized.

French Defense Minister Gerard Longuet said last year that unless the Rafale can find a foreign buyer, the government will have to stop funding its production by Dassault.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

00:40 April 2, 2012 by sunnchilde
This would be a nice money stream for Saab.
08:09 April 2, 2012 by jostein
Wouldnt it be an interesting tactic to leak the bribes you offered each time you lose a contract? Then people will wonder, what did the winner offer?
17:56 April 2, 2012 by POARS
Lamentably Brazil will not buy the well designed and economical Gripen because of its American components. Brazil would want to produce and sell the jet to other countries but is leery that the United States will veto such sales if the costumer has differences with American foreign policy. The U.S. has vetoed Brazilian aircraft sales to Venezuela in the past, using the American technology components as an excuse.

If Sweden wants a marketable jet, it has to avoid American technology inputs. Too late for the Gripen!
03:45 April 3, 2012 by emanuelarosa
@POARS

Your comment do not make any sense. Brazil unable to buy jets from Sweden because of american components DO NOT APPLY.

The relations between US and Venezuela are damaged, they are obviously a threat...

Brazil do not want it to resell to Venezuela so what is the problem to buy a jet(gripen) that is better than the french (rafale)

Spoiled swedishs are doing a big mistake not reacting, I just see speculation that it is better, but the frenchs even with an inferior jet is working on to sell it.

I didnt hear anywhere in Brazil that Saab is being considered, now I understand why Saab is doing so ´well´.
07:29 April 4, 2012 by POARS
Emanuela, o Brasil nao quer revender os avioes para a Venezuela. O Brasil quer eventualmente produzir o aviao e vender-los pelo menos regionalmente. Para isso o Brasil quer ter um acordo de transferencia de tecnologia. Aparentemente somente os franceses estao de acordo de transferir totalmente a tecnologia do seu aviao. Eu usei a Venezuela para dar um exemplo de que os EUA tem a tendencia de vetar vendas para paises com quem eles se desentendem. Isto acontece ate' se a venda for por terceiros se o item de venda tem componentes americanos. A turma da Embraer e do Itamaraty ficaram com um gostinho amargo na boca depois do veto americano na venda de avioes com componentes americanos para a Venezuela. Eu aposto que os franceses vao ganhar a encomenda. Just saying... :)
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