Saab and the Consortium for Research and Innovation in Aerospace in Quebec (CRIAQ) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU).

The partnership agreement is expected to boost collaboration with Canadian industry, universities and other research organisations.

CRIAQ CEO Alain Aubertin said: “We are very pleased with this signing as we continue to develop our aerospace industry, adding a new global player to our ecosystem.

“I am convinced that CRIAQ’s academic, industrial and SME community, and the Quebec economy as well, will clearly benefit from this international collaboration.”

This agreement also deepens the commitments of Saab to the Industrial and Technological Benefits (ITB) Policy of Canada in the future.

Introduced in 2014, ITB is an economic commitment made by bidders to the country. It requires companies that are awarded defence procurement projects in invest and undertake business activity in the country.

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In July 2019, Saab submitted a proposal to include 88 Gripen E fighters for Canada’s Future Fighter Capability Project (FFCP).

Saab Aeronautics business area vice-president and head Jonas Hjelm said: “The quality and breadth of aerospace research and innovation in Canada is globally recognised, with the Quebec region home to many excellent companies and institutions.

“Therefore, it was natural to reach this agreement with an important organisation like CRIAQ. We look forward to working together to benefit research and the fostering of talent in Quebec.”

In March, Saab partnered with several Canadian aerospace companies for the FFCP deal.

Known as the ‘Gripen for Canada Team’, the companies include IMP Aerospace & Defence, CAE, Peraton Canada and GE Aviation.