Management of the largest in area and population of the countries in South America continues to skillfully maneuver between large aviation companies, trying to blow my best offer. It is possible that in the next round of the game specific location will be re-allocated Russian aircraft manufacturers, but the satisfaction on this occasion will probably premature.
The story of the purchase of new fighter aircraft for the air forces of Brazil through the new, sharp turn. Dilma Rousseff was inaugurated as President of the country, annulled the results of the last qualifying competition, practically running the race anew.
…And now everyone got out and entered anew
Traditional Latin American "soap opera" about the renewal of the Brazilian fighter reaches the twelfth year. In 1999, the government of the republic has decided to change the obsolete aircraft Mirage III, purchased from France in the 70's and 80's. To replace them planned to purchase one or two squadrons (12-24 cars) more modern fighters, having spent a about 700 million dollars.
The contest was named FX. Among the main contenders called Mirage 2000BR (joint application of the French group "Dassault" and the Brazilian "Embraer»), JAS-39 Gripen Swedish group Saab and South American F-16E / F from the "Lockheed Martin". RAC "MiG" was ready to deliver the latest modification of the MiG-29 SMT. Showed interest in the U.S. market and AHC "Sukhoi", which had a successful sales experience modernized Su-30 to China and India. Holding planned to bring to the Brazilian competition of early version of the Su-35 (Su-27M), working together with the company "Avibras."
But the delay in the allocation of funds delayed the tender. In 2001 and 2003 he was "temporarily postponed", and in February 2004, was completely abolished (at first, but as it turns out, is not too far away for the last time). In July 2005, the Brazilian Air Force have acquired to spoof the outgoing Mirage III temporary election — 10 Mirage 2000C interceptor and two double training Mirage 2000B. Deliveries of the presence of the Ministry of Defence of France have allowed to stall for a few more years. Squadron received "second-hand" fighters (manufactured between 1984 and 1987), the Brazilians began to slowly new "approach to the projectile."
In November 2007, the programm procurement was restarted under the name F-X2. Now under the scope of modernization came just three aircraft nomenclature Brazil. In 1-x, this lightweight tactical fighter AMX A-1 is the joint development of the Brazilian "Embraer" and the Italian "Aeromakki" and "Alenia" (53 cars). In-2, South American aircraft Northrop F-5E / F Tiger II (57 units). And in-3, 12 already mentioned "Vice» Mirage 2000. Total planned to buy more than 36 ready-made fighter planes, with all this additional agreement establishes the possibility of localized production in Brazil in order to bring the total to 120 aircraft.
Benchmark prices for purchased 36 machines, named by the Brazilian government, amounted to 2.2 billion dollars, but experts noted that the total contract for 120 aircraft will be from 6 to 10 billion dollars.
Who is the last?
Those wishing to participate in the F-X2, of course, there was a lot. In all lined up virtually all large aircraft manufacturing corporations in the world. In-1's, Europeans came (usually — apart). French offered Dassault Rafale, the Swedes — the same "Gripen", all the others intrigued by — Eurofighter Typhoon.
From the United States came to the competition, "Boeing", who wished to realize Brazilians F/A-18E/F Block II Super Hornet. "Lockheed Martin" tried to include parallel in the number of applicants duty F-16E / F Block 70, with a proposal for a unified Indian competition MMRCA («military-industrial complex" has already talked about him in the number 45 of 2010). The idea of supplying fighter fifth-generation F-35 pretty quickly died, in the main on monetary judgments, but not least, and because of the severe delays in schedules machine availability (Brazil wanted to upgrade its own fleet of fighter aircraft no later than 2016, and obtain export "Lightning» II by then it was already almost impossible).
Russian aviation industry has made enough progress to read — put forward for tender is hypothetical export version of the Su-35s. On the second contest coming out later version of the same family, which has offered the Brazilian military.
The subtleties of the Latin American skies
Brazilian competition is a good illustration of the more or less civilized lobbying process in modern sverhtehnologichny industry.
State aircraft manufacturer "Embraer" — the pride of the Federative Republic of Brazil, escaped to the international market of small aircraft for civilian air traffic. It was alleged that senior bureaucrats of the Russian Federation to promote the Su-35 in the first part of the competition were ready to go on a package of unprecedented countertrade approval for the deployment of a joint civilian production "Embraer". But Brazilians reacted nervously to the project "Sukhoi Superjet" considering his opponent, and imposed conditions that complicate the launch of a series of Russian airliner that for obvious reasons, it is unacceptable.
In turn, "Embraer" as a possible accomplice localized production had a habit to choose for themselves the winners in the middle of the contestants. In the first "swim" so was the French company "Dassault" (a minority shareholder of the Brazilian aviakontserna), resulting in the findings of the joint tender offer, conditional ready for localization — Mirage 2000-5 version titled Mirage 2000BR. "Dassault" solved his problem (2000's "Mirage" were taken out of production in France, somewhere had to do with the accumulated technology and human resources), "Embraer" — his own.
The second part of the "Brazilian ballet" to write off "budget" proposal "Mirage" by forcing "Dassault" play "grown-up", "Rafa" are armed with the French Air Force and is often served on all of the great military aviatendery, but not yet win any one of the first blocked.
In October 2008, Brazil announced that the results of the consideration of initial claims circle of candidates is narrowed to 3 — "Superhorneta", "Rafale" and "Gripen". Russian aviation industry, flying out from the competition, received a "comfort" the deal to supply Brazilian aviator 12 attack helicopters, Mi-35 for 150 million dollars.
In autumn 2009, the press confidently called eventual winner "Rafale". Latin American regional military power timidly said that, in their opinion, "Rafale" really lead. The reaction of the expert community inside Brazil itself was quite diverse: for example, some experts at thought that the probable purchase of "French" would be disastrous for the state Air Force. Go with this, discussions began about resuscitation Union "Dassault" and "Embraer" on the basis of a future transaction.
Here, the "Embraer" and threw the main trick, saying that he much more fun "Gripen" and the idea of co-production with Saab. JAS-39NG, say, one and
a half times cheaper "Rafale" but also economical to operate. Shocked by the French retreated to rewrite the technical and commercial proposal, as Americans, have rejected the idea of mind-boggling to realize Brazilians have not made F-35 fighter jets, took heart and began intensive lobbying "Superhornety."
Against the background of this joyous chaos Dilma Rousseff's predecessor — Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva made a Solomonic decision: postponed announcement of tender results for 2010. Sources in the office of the head of the country indicated that the president, in principle, kindly refers specifically to the French proposal, but believes that the cost to the "Rafale" put up quite inadequate.
The French really, for a number of information sought for 120 cars 8.2 billion dollars (died appetite after an affront to the "Embraer" to 6.2 billion) and another four — for the supply of spare parts and maintenance for 30 years. For comparison: the same source cited proposals Saab (4.5 billion per aircraft, and 1.5 billion for the service) and "Boeing" (5.7 and 1.9 billion, respectively). However, unlike rivals "Dassault" was prepared to go to meet the Brazilian side in the issue of the greatest transfer of technology.
2010 year was held in the wires. Up inflation and large external debt bezotstupno sought to save on heavy military program notes. Lula, the outgoing head of state, not lusted to make a final decision that, whatever it was, would have put the ruling party in jeopardy of criticism before the election. To solve the problem of F-X2 dropped his fellow member and successor Dilma Rousseff.
Sunset on the third lap
Rousseff, the daughter of the Bulgarian Communist Ruseva, quite a unique figure even for Latin America. Constructive left, take part in a guerrilla war, put his hand even to the "expropriation" the contents of safe deposit boxes, do not become a "bad obvious" choice group "Dassault" for its predecessor. At first it had suspended the tender and launched it anew. Now Russian company from a purely formal point of view, can try their luck again, and the Brazilian press has already recalled the rejected almost three years back the Su-35.
So, it seems we will have F-X3? Not agreeing with the French on discounts to "Rafa" and does not even take "Superhornety" (last attempt to "break" the proposal "Boeing" at the competition made recognizable by Senator John McCain), to which is attached itself does not pack the same advanced technology aircraft, which was ready to give "Dassault", Brazil is trying to force the main person seriously intrigued to sacrifice for their own monetary appetites.
Considered very expensive (about 110-120 million dollars per car) pan-European "Typhoon" scarecrow for the contestants can not be, but that role perfectly cope Russian plane (to be named Su-35 or MiG-35 — not principal). Relatively cheap and high-quality products of the Russian aviation industry is able to add nerves newcomer qualifying round.
Most likely specifically for this purpose and "reset" the tender. Hardly is it that the administration is ready to purchase brand new Russian equipment, but it can be fully used as a lever of pressure on "Dassault" or "Boeing" (looking for someone who will treat more responsive to the transfer of advanced technologies to Brazil). All the more so that the heirs of the founder of the French group Marcel Bloch also nowhere to retreat: the tender almost the only real chance for them to grab the first export order, breaking through the wall of neglect "Rafale" from the Third World.