The Pentagon cut off negotiations with Lockheed Martin on Lot 9 production of the F-35 fighter, announcing late Wednesday it is unilaterally definitizing the contract for the 57 jets in the lot at a price of $6.1 billion. A Joint Strike Fighter program office spokesman said “after 14 months of good faith negotiations, it was clear that further negotiations would not result” in an agreed contract, so the government acted unilaterally to definitize it. After production of over 200 jets, “we know what it costs” to build an F-35, he said, and “we came up with a price we thought was fair and reasonable.” A Lockheed Martin spokesman said the deal was “not a mutually agreed-upon contract” and obligates the company to perform “under standard terms and conditions, and previously agreed-to-items.” He said Lockheed is “disappointed” with the government’s action and “will continue to execute on the F-35 program, and we will evaluate our options and path forward.”
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