The Canadian government has submitted a letter of request through the United States government’s Foreign Military Sales for the potential procurement of up to 16 Boeing P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft, associated equipment, and initial servicing, as well as access to intellectual property and technical data.
The move is part of Canada’s effort to replace its aging CP-140 maritime patrol fleet, which was been upgraded over the years to keep them in service. Canada considered buying P-8As in the past, but the project was deemed unaffordable at the time. Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand met with Boeing officials last month in the U.S. to discuss a potential P-8A acquisition program.
The CP-140 replacement program remains in the options analysis phase, and the LOR does not commit Canada to purchase the P-8A. A government statement says, “the final decision will be based on the capability offered, availability, pricing and benefits to Canadian industry.” However, the government has said the P-8A “is the only currently available aircraft that meets all of the [program’s] operational requirements, namely anti-submarine warfare and C4ISR.”
Boeing issued a statement following the submission of the LOR: “The P-8A is a proven multi-mission capability that meets all requirements and will protect Canada’s oceans and its borders for future generations. We look forward to working with the U.S. and Canadian governments to finalize this sale under the Foreign Military Sales process. Together with our Canadian industry partners – CAE, GE Aviation Canada, IMP Aerospace & Defence, KF Aerospace, Honeywell Aerospace Canada, Raytheon Canada, and StandardAero – we are committed to delivering 100% Industrial and Technological Benefits that will significantly grow Canada’s aerospace and defense industry.”
Canadian aircraft manufacturer Bombardier has urged the government to hold a competition to replace the CP-140s with the intent of offering its Global 6500 series business jet.