Embraer say U.S. purchase of Super Tucano could boost Super Hornet chances

Embraer CEO Frederico Curado suggested that the purchase of his company’s Super Tucano by the United States will help Boeing secure an order for Super Hornets by Brazil.

Curado’s comments are far short of a quid-pro-quo proposal, but the Embraer CEO apparently believed a deal to buy U.S.-assembled Super Tucanos would be an easier way to satisfy offset requirements than using Boeing’s large commercial aircraft business.

The comments were made last year during discussions with the U.S. ambassador to Brazil and reported in a “confidential” internal State Department memorandum and published by the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks.

The memo, as well as one drafted in November 2009, asserts that the Brazilian military favors the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet over the Saab Gripen and Dassault Rafale.

The second memo was issued after French President Nicolas Sarkozy visited Brazil, during which Brazil’s president suggested Rafale would be selected for F-X2.

One of the issues that has dominated the F-X2 debate is the level of technology transfer. That is also reflected in the November 2009 U.S. cable, which states that “Sarkozy presented the myth that France is the perfect partner for states that do not want to rely on U.S. technology, even though the U.S. has agreed in principle to transfer relevant technology if Brazil purchases the F-18.

However, if the Rafale sale goes through, Dassault may have to request export-control licenses from the U.S. for parts built with American technology.”



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