A Canadian Army's LAV III

General Dynamics Land Systems-Canada (GDLS) has won a $13bn contract from the Saudi Arabia Government to build and deliver military and civilian light-armoured vehicles, marking Canada’s largest advanced manufacturing export win.

The 14-year contract, which involves the manufacturing and delivery of heavy-armoured fighting vehicles, ancillary equipment, training and support services, is valued at $10bn, but it could reach $13bn if all available options are exercised.

Canada minister of international trade Ed Fast said the government is focused on creating jobs and opportunities for Canadian workers and their families.

"This landmark contract win will create thousands of advanced manufacturing jobs and new sources of prosperity throughout southern Ontario and every region of Canada," Fast said.

The Saudi Arabia Government has been purchasing light, fast and off-road manoeuvrable armoured vehicles from different firms since 2009.

GDLS is behind the development of light-armoured vehicle three (LAV III), which is used by the Canadian army in Afghanistan, in addition to similar Stryker armoured vehicles for the US army.

The latest contract for GDLS would boost the US weapons maker, who has been hit with drop in revenues amid declining US army spending on weaponry.

Recently, the defence firm has been hit by Canada’s cancellation of a $2bn deal for the procurement of 108 heavyarmoured personnel carriers.

Image: A Canadian army’s LAV III. Photo: courtesy of Helene Samson.

Defence Technology