I can see this cutting a few ways. If Canada does opt to go with a fighter other than the F-35, the F-35 programme could decide to "refund" the $540 mil. has contributed and the farm out the component workshare which had originally been intended for Canada. I see this as being a real possibility if one of the claimed factors behind not choosing the F-35 is workshare and/or offsets, since the F-35 programme has already set what those can be, and there is no room to change that if Canada were to set different requirements as part of their replacement fighter programme.This is personal opinion @John Fedup, but I doubt if Canada chose not to go for F35 they would loose participation. Canada and the US are attached at the Preverbal hip both geographically and industrially. Canada without an order has spent over 540 million dollars on F35 without buying any to this point with Lockheed Martin promising a return over the life Of the program in the Billions.
The federal government has made another multimillion-dollar investment into the development of the F-35 stealth fighter jet, even as it weighs a new extension to the $19-billion competition to replace Canada's aging CF-18s.www.ctvnews.ca
Turkey was of course forced out due to a number of issues that needless to say seem impossible to happen between the US and Canada.
As a matter of opinion I think F35 is the best bet, however I am not Canadian. Each of these Jets has great selling points for my neighbors to the North.
F35 gives state of the art in all aspects,
F/A18 Block 3 Rinos are durable no slouch machines. That bring multirole to new levels. It can even tanker siblings.
JAS 35 along with its great tech brings it’s unique ability to operate in the worst of cold weather from short strips.
Another potential issue, if Canada was mad enough to think that a domestic Gripen build was a good idea, was that either Canada would need to pull aerospace component workers from F-35 component work to make components for domestically built Gripens, or setup entire new facilities and a workforce for Gripen while keeping existing workers producing F-35 components.