Public will see F-35 cost estimates after independent analysis: Ambrose - InfoNews

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Public will see F-35 cost estimates after independent analysis: Ambrose

In this July 14, 2011 file photo, an aircraft maintainer walks by the U.S. Air Force F-35 Lightning II joint strike fighter (JSF) at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, U.S. Air Force, Samuel King Jr.
June 12, 2012 - 4:33 PM

OTTAWA - Public Works Minister Rona Ambrose says the government's latest estimate on the cost of the F-35 stealth fighter will be made public when it has been independently verified.

Ambrose, under heavy questioning today in the House of Commons, says she has no intention of disclosing any figures prematurely.

The Harper government, in responding to the auditor general's scathing report in April, said it would provide an updated price tag on the F-35 within 60 days.

Ambrose says the secretariat that's overseeing replacement of Canada's aging CF-18s has asked for more time to calculate figures from National Defence officials.

Arguments about the radar-evading jet's cost have been at the centre of a political storm for more than a year as both the air force and the Harper government insisted they would pay $75 million per aircraft, despite mounting evidence in the U.S. that it would be higher.

Auditor General Michael Ferguson accused defence officials of hiding the true price tag and Public Works of not following proper procedures.

The Tories unveiled a seven-point plan to answer the criticism and promised the F-35 procurement would start from scratch with independently verified estimates and assumptions.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2012
The Canadian Press

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