And, finally, a third and final post about aircraft procurement: how new jet fighters are tied to the fate of Quebec’s corporate darling, Bombardier.
There is an interesting Q&A in the Globe and Mail with Airbus CEO Tom Enders in which he explain, in part, why his company jumped at the chance to take over the Bombardier C Series passenger jet project – and what that might mean for Canada’s next fighter jet.
He said, in part that “It [the Airbus~Bombardier partnership] also opens new opportunities for Bombardier, as it taps into Airbus’s global supply chain, and the Canadian government as it seeks to modernize the military … [and] … he wants it known that Airbus sees this deal as just the start of a lasting relationship with Canada. And that includes the Canadian government … [and, further] … Airbus has made Canada its fifth home country, ranking it alongside Airbus co-founders France, Germany, Spain and Britain … [and] … For Mr. Enders, that designation carries real meaning and expectation. “You expect your home country to at least take a very fair view of your own industry, and if that industry’s competitive with what it’s offering for your needs, that you favour your industry. That is what home country is about,” he says … [that is] … a not-too-subtle message to Canadian politicians that Airbus expects to be considered whenever the government thinks about buying airplanes, jet fighters, military transport planes or even satellites … [and] … Already, Airbus is preparing plans to submit a proposal for its Typhoon fighter jet now that the Canadian government has signalled it won’t buy fighters from Boeing as long as the trade dispute continues. “There is a broad array of topics where I think we can engage,” he says. “I’m sure we can do more if the will on both sides is there, and on the Airbus side, clearly that is the case.”“
There is a loud and clear message here for Prime Minister Trudeau and Premier Couillard and , the Globe and Mail says, “Canadian and Quebec politicians would do well to heed Mr. Enders. He’s used to dealing with politicians and doesn’t shy away from a fight. Lately, he’s been the focus of rumours that French President Emmanuel Macron doesn’t like him and wants him fired. When asked about the controversy, Mr. Enders gives a wry smile. “Look, I’ve seen enough crisis and battles in my career,” he says rhyming off his 26 years in the business, including 17 at Airbus. A fight with the President of France? Bring it on.”“
The message is that it is time for Justin Trudeau and Harjit Sajjan to stop talking military rubbish about their juvenile fantasy of buying used Australian F-18s. Little Liberal Canada is now in league with the big boys, exemplified by Dr Enders, and the “leadership” had better turn ministers and generals and bureaucrats to looking at how Canada will integrate the Eurofighter Typhoon into the NORAD role because it seems pretty clear that there will be a price for salvaging Bombardier.