Will Canada Buy More Israeli Drones?

The Canadian government has be remarkably quiet about its earlier plans to make a large purchase of UAVs.

It is interesting to explore some of the factors that may go into selecting a vendor.

In 2004 the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries organisedIn 2004, CADSI organised a

Canada / Israel Industry Partnering Mission” to “advance industrial partnerships between Canadian and Israeli companies.” Speakers at the event included Canada’s Minister of National Defence, Israel’s Ambassador to Canada, a representative from Israel’s Ministry of Defense, and top bureaucrats from Canadian government departments. Canadian military companies heard presentations from Israel’s top weapons industries and then held 20-minute, face-to-face “Company One-on-Ones” with Elbit, ElisraIsraeli Aircraft Industries, Israeli Military Industries, Rafael, Simigon and Soltam. (Source)

In November 2009, Industry Minister Tony Clement visited Israel, with a view to improved trade relations with Israel.He was photographed in an Israeli Aerospace Industries factory in Lod, Israel, along with the Chaiman of IAI Zvi Eldar, its business development vp Yehoshua Eldar, and the director of its UAV programme Schmuel Falik. Also present was the smiling Jon Allen, Canada’s Ambassador to Israel.

Canada already operates Heron drones in Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, a ‘competitor’ of IAI, Elbit Systems of Israel, is one of the worldwide leaders in UAV production and sales.

Given the Government’s committment to support the Israeli state, its close connections with the Israeli drones industry, and the possible wish to disassociate itself from the bloodstained  ‘Predator’ and ‘Reaper’ brand names, there would seem to be a likelihood that future drone purchases will be Israeli.

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