Federal procurement delays will not scuttle big contract, says Vector

Colin MacLean
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SUMMERISDE – A local company’s contract with a European aircraft manufacturer is secure, despite delays to the national military procurement strategy announced in the recent federal budget.

Jeff Poirier, president of Vector Aerospace Engine Services – Atlantic, said recently that his company’s contract with Airbus Military remains intact despite the government’s move.

“Our agreement to partner with Airbus Military as the power plant maintenance, repair and overhaul (contractor) ‎remains fully engaged,” said Poirier.

“We understand the economic pressures facing government, and the prioritizing of funds is required.  Vector still believes the Airbus Military solution is the best for the Canadian Government, and will be standing beside Airbus Military for success” he added.

Slemon Park-based Vector Aerospace Engine Services – Atlantic signed a maintenance agreement with Spanish company, Airbus Military in early November, 2013.

The later company is bidding to replace the Canada’s current fleet of search and rescue planes with its own C295 aircraft.

The deal is that if Airbus Military is successful in its bid, Vector Aerospace would do the engine maintenance for much of the new fleet.

The agreement is worth $125 million over 20 years.

Airbus Military representatives who were in Summerside to make the announcement originally predicted that a decision would be made sometime in 2015 as to what plane would replace the current fleet.

However, the recent federal budget revealed that $3.1 billion in previously announced military procurement money is being put off into future. Some reports have kicked that money down the road as far away as at least 2018-19.

The Journal Pioneer asked Public Works and Government Services Canada, which is now leading military procurement, for a timeframe as to when a decision might be made on replacement aircraft, however, none was available.

Colin.MacLean@JournalPioneer.com

@JournalPMacLean

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