A statement from the Parliamentary Budget Officer.
In March 2011, the Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) provided Parliament with a report on the estimated acquisition and sustainment costs associated with Canada’s planned purchase of 65 F-35 fighter jets. Shortly thereafter, the Department of National Defence (DND) responded to the PBO report. In that response, DND claimed that the total costs associated with the F-35 program would be approximately $15 billion. However, the recent Auditor General’s report reveals that, in June 2010, DND’s true cost estimate was approximately $25 billion—representing a difference of $10 billion. The inclusion of this difference would bring DND’s cost estimate in line with that of the PBO.
The PBO remains ready and willing to serve Parliament by providing independent analysis on any new options the Government may wish to consider replacing Canada’s aging fleet of CF-18s.