NAVAL AIR STATION PATUXENT RIVER, Maryland (Reuters) – Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) must decide in March 2014 whether to invest tens of millions of dollars to continue production of the F/A-18 fighter jet, a senior Boeing executive said on Monday, underscoring his confidence that sufficient orders would emerge to keep the plane in production until beyond 2020.
“I know where my money is betting,” said Mike Gibbons, vice president of F/A-18 Super Hornet and EA-18 Growler programs at Boeing, told reporters after a U.S. Navy ceremony celebrating the 35th anniversary of the first flight of the original F/A-18 Hornet at the headquarters of the Navy’s aviation command.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Strong demand from Gulf countries for Lockheed Martin Corp’s F-35 fighter jet has prompted Washington to grapple with the thorny question about releasing the jet to the region sooner than expected, a senior U.S. defense official said.
Washington has already approved sales of the new stealth fighter to a range of allies, including Turkey, South Korea, Japan and Israel, but sales to the Gulf require a deeper review given U.S. policy guidelines that call for Israel to maintain a qualitative military edge in the Middle East.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Randy Forbes, a key member of the House Armed Services Committee, on Thursday urged Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to rethink the U.S. Navy’s current plan to allow Boeing Co’s F/A-18 fighter jet production to close in 2016.
Forbes released a December 4 letter to Hagel in which he raised concerns about the fighter industrial base and warned about relying solely on the next-generation F-35C fighter jet being developed by Lockheed Martin Corp since it will not be ready for operational use on an aircraft carrier until 2019.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Lockheed Martin Corp’s F-35 fighter jet is making good progress as it nears initial combat use by the U.S. Marine Corps in July 2015, but the company must still finalize the software needed to deliver weapons and fuse data from its many sensors, the Pentagon’s F-35 program chief told Reuters on Wednesday.
“Getting to 2015 there’s a whole lot of things that have to be put in place, not the least of which is the software on the program,” Lieutenant General Chris Bogdan, the Air Force three-star general who took over the helm of the $392 billion F-35 program around one year ago, said in an interview.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Air Force may have to cut funding for research and development unless Congress reverses a law requiring across the board spending cuts, the No. 2 Air Force acquisition official said.
Lieutenant General Charles Davis, military deputy to the Air Force’s top weapons buyer, said Pentagon leaders were determined to protect funding in new technologies, but the Air Force would have to cut funding in that area somewhat to ensure the readiness of its forces if sequestration stayed in effect.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A new video is circulating on the Internet that pokes fun at Lockheed Martin Corp’s (LMT.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) F-35 fighter jet while lauding the F/A-18 built by rival Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the latest salvo in an increasingly pitched battle over Canadian fighter orders.
In the video, two little boys compare what they were able to buy with the $10 they each got from their grandfather. One shows off his stealthy new F-35 fighter, while the other proudly reports that he was able to buy three F/A-18 plus 10 years’ worth of logistics support for the same amount.
WASHINGTON, Dec 3 (Reuters) – Executives at U.S. weapons
makers on Tuesday said they were cautiously optimistic that U.S.
lawmakers would reach agreement on an interim federal budget to
smooth out across-the-board cuts in military funding in fiscal
2014 and 2015.
Chief Executive William Swanson of Raytheon Corp and
Chief Financial Officer Bruce Tanner of Lockheed Martin Corp
said on Tuesday they did not expect Congress to reach a
comprehensive agreement on reducing the federal deficit, which
would help the Pentagon avert the threat of $500 billion in
military spending cuts over the next decade.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Raytheon Co (RTN.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is hoping to finalize orders valued at $4 billion to $5 billion from countries in the Middle East in a matter of weeks, Chief Executive William Swanson told an investor conference on Tuesday.
Swanson said he just returned from a visit to the region, including stops in Qatar, Oman, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, where he met with senior leaders about an array of missile defense deals and other orders.
WASHINGTON, Dec 3 (Reuters) – Raytheon Co is hoping
to finalize orders valued at $4 billion to $5 billion from
countries in the Middle East in a matter of weeks, Chief
Executive William Swanson told an investor conference on
Swanson said he just returned from a visit to the region,
including stops in Qatar, Oman, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, where
he met with senior leaders about an array of missile defense
deals and other orders.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Mandatory U.S. budget cuts known as sequestration are resulting in job losses across the country and threaten to undermine U.S. competitiveness in the global economy, industry executives and academics said on Monday, urging Congress to reverse the cuts.
Wes Bush, chief executive of Northrop Grumman Corp (NOC.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), one of the biggest U.S. weapons makers, said his company had already reduced its workforce by 19 percent in recent years, and more cuts were likely unless U.S. lawmakers ended the across-the-board cuts required under sequestration.