PARIS Jan 8 French plane-maker Dassault
Aviation will respond to an information demand from
Canada on its Rafale fighter plane and would be ready to
participate in a tender, were Ottawa to backtrack on its support
of Lockheed Martin's F-35, new chief executive Eric
Trappier told French daily Les Echos.
" Canada is potentially the first country that could
challenge the F-35," Trappier said.
"We are ready to explain what a Rafale offer could be, its
operational capabilities and an industrial cooperation," he
added in an interview due to be published in Les Echos'
Canadian officials said last month that the government would
restart the process of searching for a new fighter for Canada's
air force after soaring costs spurred a rethink of plans to buy
Lockheed Martin Corp's F-35.
They said it was still possible that Ottawa would eventually
decide to buy the F-35, dismissing reports Canada had decided to
walk away from the jet.