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Fighter jet sale should not be Offset by operations at risk

The security policy Commission of the national Council (SIK) consents to the procurement of new combat aircraft for the price of a maximum of 6 billion Swiss francs, with a large majority. The purchase price will compensate, but only partially, by counter-transactions in Switzerland.

It comes to so-called offset transactions. With these jobs are compensated in connection with the fighter jet purchase, which will be awarded abroad, with shops in Switzerland. The Council of States calls for a full compensation. The SIK has decided, however, that an Offset-share of 60 percent of the order volume, as the Commission President, Werner Salzmann (SVP/BE) announced on Tuesday ahead of the Federal house media.

This corresponds to the request of the Federal Council. A higher proportion would be of the view that the government of an industry subsidy. Offset transactions should therefore be limited to jobs directly related to the fighter jets (20 percent) and those in the defence and security industries (40 percent). The SIK have security and not to pursue economic development policy, also said Salzmann.

Less attack surface

at the same time a lower Offset portion in a voting campaign, less attack surface. It is a matter of the people a transparent template to submit, declared the President of the Commission. A full compensation would increase the cost of the procurement unnecessarily and and security policy are not relevant or even dubious transactions, opening the door.

Salzmann admitted to concerns that the economy could absorb such a large volume of orders hardly. In addition to the fighter jets, the purchase of new ground-to-air in the next few years, namely missile (Bodluv), as well as the procurement of new equipment and weapons for the ground troops. In total, the costs amount to 15 billion Swiss francs.

Regional distribution key

The Council of States had decided to have an Offset percentage of 100 percent. The majority of the small chamber is convinced that the only way to support the economy can be secured for the fighter jet procurement. The Western Swiss cantons of Ticino and fear in addition to the Offset-shops to benefit, because there is little defense, and security industries.

The Council of States has been inserted, therefore, a regional distribution key in the template. 65 percent of the offsets to be awarded in the German-speaking Switzerland, 30 percent in Western Switzerland and 5% in the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland. The SIK has agreed to, according to Salzmann added.

width support

you Rejected, however, requests for higher or lower Offset portions. A higher amount would be charged to the ground-based air defense, a deeper would threaten the ability to stay in power, said Salzmann. Also, no majority found applications, to the people also the type of aircraft to submit to buy a small fleet of lighter fighter aircraft, or expand international cooperation.

The planning decision on the purchase of new combat aircraft the SIK in the overall vote, agreed with 18 votes to 5. This is subject to the optional Referendum. Non-commitment and rejection of applications of SP and Greens found in the SIK no majority.

The clear result of the vote, it is expected that the national Council of the procurement is to agree despite the new majorities, clear. According to Salzmann, the planning decision should be adjusted in the winter session.

Four candidates in the race

This contains the order for the purchase of new fighter jets for a maximum amount of 6 billion Swiss francs, but not to be procured, the type of aircraft. In addition, the Federal Council decides at a later time. In the race, the Stealth aircraft F-35 from Lockheed Martin, the F/A-18 Super Hornet from Boeing, the Rafale by the French manufacturer Dassault and Airbus aircraft, Eurofighter.

The evaluation report should be available in the second half of the year 2020. A Referendum is expected to take place on 27. September 2020 instead. By the beginning of 2021, the Federal Council will decide which fighter aircraft should be purchased. By 2025, the first Jets on the rise in the Swiss sky, in 2030 the procurement is to be completed. In Parallel, the F/A-18 and the last Tiger to be put out of service. (sda)

Created: 26.11.2019, 12:53 PM

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