Monday, February 11, 2013
"The Worst Procurement in the History of Canada"
At least until the F-35 saga is wrapped up. "The Worst Procurement in the History of Canada" is the title of a report released by the Rideau Institute and the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives into the inept and seemingly endless quest for a helicopter to replace the Canadian navy's sclerotic Sea Kings.
2013 marks the 50th anniversary of the entry into service of Canada’s Sea King helicopters, which despite their age and associated risks are still being relied upon by the Canadian Forces.
Twenty years have passed since Prime Minister Jean Chrétien cancelled the contract for EH-101s that were supposed to replace the Sea Kings. Ten years have passed since the Paul Martin government signed a contract for the CH-148 Cyclones with Sikorsky – and not a single fully operational Cyclone has been delivered to date.
The authors make three recommendations:
That the Government provide full transparency on the Maritime Helicopter Project;
That the Government get tough with Sikorsky regarding the overdue and over-budget CH-148 Cyclone by actually imposing the late penalties, and refusing further top-up funding;
That the Government commence an accelerated review of off-the-shelf alternatives without further delay, so as to be in a position to negotiate a new contract with another supplier in the event of a continued failure by Sikorsky to fulfill its obligations.