Brazil, Russia Postpone Decision on French Defense Purchases

Bad day for the French defense industry:

Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said that the final decision on a fighter jet purchase will be made after the upcoming Brazilian presidential elections on Oct. 3, but before he leaves office on Jan. 1, 2011. The contract, expected to be worth upwards of $3 billion, was all but awarded to the French Rafale earlier this year, before the Brazilian Defense Ministry objected to a decision being made before its tender and performance evaluation had been completed.

Meanwhile, Russia opened its search for amphibious command vessels to an international tender, after negotiations for the purchase of four French-made Mistrals bogged down over the question of technology transfers. Russia wants sensitive command and radar equipment included with the ships. But according to Le Figaro, some of the components in those systems are American-made and subject to U.S. export controls.

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