Mark Collins – RCAF Fixed-Wing SAR Aircraft RFPs Slip Into Next Year

Oh dear.  Further to this March 2015 post,


New RCAF Fixed-Wing SAR Plane: Request for Proposals At Last

things slide a bit right again:


Fixed Wing Search and Rescue project faces another delay

Bids were supposed to be in Sept. 28 for the Fixed Wing Search and Rescue aircraft project.

But that won’t be happening.

The process has now been extended and bids for the new aircraft for the RCAF will now be required by Jan. 11, 2016.

Public Works official Pierre-Alain Bujold tells Defence Watch that the extension was requested by industry.

Public Works did not provide any further details such as which companies asked for the extension in bidding or why.

Public Works estimates that once bids are in, it may take another six months to evaluate the proposals. It has no idea when the winning bidder would be announced or when aircraft might arrive.

“It is only once this evaluation has been duly completed and the selection of the successful bidder has been approved that further information will be released,” Public Works noted. “A delivery schedule of the new fleet will only be finalized once proposals have been received and the successful bid presented to government.”

The DND says it expects a contract award in 2016 and final delivery of the planes in 2023. No details have been provided on when the first deliveries of planes would take place…

2023!  Holy slow cow, SARman!  One suspects the NDP and Liberals might make an election issue of this seemingly interminable acquisition–after all this is one military mission–warm and fuzzy–they really, really like.  The Liberals say this at their defence election platform (bottom right p. 2):

… top equipment priorities will include acquiring cost effective search and rescue aircraft…

Here’s Public Works’ official website for the program.

Mark Collins, a prolific Ottawa blogger, is a Fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute; he tweets @Mark3Ds

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