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Economy

France on Gripen - "It's like choosing a Volvo over a Ferrari"

Published onsdag 6 januari 2010 kl 15.19

The war of words continues between Sweden and France over a multi-million dollar contract to sell fighter planes to Brazil.

After Wednesday's media reports in Brazil that the government there was now favouring Sweden's Saab JAS Gripen fighter jet over the French Rafale warplane, France's defence minister hit back by claiming that if Brazil bought the Gripen it would be like choosing "a Volvo over a Ferrari."

Herve Morin went on to say that the Gripen is a plane that "never flies" and only "exists in development on the factory floor."

Brazil is aiming to buy 36 fighter jets and according to media reports in the country, the government is favouring Saab and its new version of the Gripen because it was half the price than its French competitor.

Despite criticism in Sweden against Swedish arms exports in general, both the government and the industry here are desperate to sell the plane in order to cover the expensive development costs.

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