February 14, 2012 / 2:10 PM / 6 years ago

Swiss open to concrete offer from Dassault for jets

ZURICH, Feb 14 (Reuters) - Switzerland would be prepared to examine a concrete offer from rival Dassault to buy figher jet planes if it were to be presented with one, its defence minister said on Tuesday.

“We’ve asked the French to give us a really concrete offer,” Defence Minister Ueli Maurer told a news conference on Tuesday.

“If we really do get a lower offer, we’d be able to look at it. We only have a deal with Sweden when the parliament’s given the funding and there’s possibly been a referendum,” he said.

In November the government opted to buy 22 JAS-39 Gripens for a price tag of 3.1 billion Swiss francs ($3.4 bln) over rival bids for the Rafale built by France’s Dassault Aviation and EADS’s Anglo-German-Italian Eurofighter Typhoon.

Newspapers hreported that Dassault had made a cheaper counter bid, but Maurer said he had not received another offer from Dassault.

Reporting by Caroline Copley

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