* Technology transfer key factor in bid choice -minister
* France, U.S., Sweden vie for multibillion-dollar deal
* Lula had supported France, Rousseff leans toward U.S.
AIX-EN-PROVENCE, France, July 9 The Brazilian
government will not review multibillion-dollar bids for a
fighter jet deal until the start of 2012, Defence Minister
Nelson Jobim told Reuters on Saturday.
"We will go to examine it into the beginning of next year.
At the moment, we are only focused on the domestic agenda,"
Jobim said on the sidelines of a business forum in southern
Brazil, which wants to rebuild and expand its dilapidated
fleet of air force jets, has been considering offers from
France's Dassault Aviation AVMC.PA, Boeing (BA.N) and Sweden's
The Brazilian contract will likely be worth much more than
the initial bids, which have been reported by Brazilian media at
about $4 billion to $6 billion. Maintenance contracts will be
lucrative, and Brazil could eventually buy more than 100
Aside from the price and tactical considerations of
Dassault's Rafale, Boeing's F-18 and Saab's Griffon, Brazil
needs a technology transfer to help create jobs by manufacturing
modern fighters at home and potentially exporting them to
neighbours in Latin America.
"The principal necessity is on technology transfer," said
Jobim, who declined to say which of the three offers Brazil was
Dassault's Rafale had appeared close to clinching its first
foreign deal with former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da
Silva, who had said he preferred the French plane over its
But Lula's successor, Dilma Rousseff, appears to be leaning
towards Boeing's F-18 after saying she wanted to rethink all the
finalists' bids. Since taking office in January, Rousseff has
pursued stronger political ties with the United States.
(Reporting by Cyril Altmeyer; Writing by Marie Maitre; Editing
by John Irish and Peter Cooney)