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Boeing F-15 not good enough for South Korea

Staff writer |
South Korea says it has rejected Boeing's bid to build and supply 60 new fighter jets. Boeing was the sole contender in the bidding process worth 8.3 trillion won ($7.7 billion).

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Boeing said in a statement that it was "deeply disappointed" by Tuesday's decision, adding it "rigorously" followed the South Korean arms procurement agency's instructions throughout the entire process.

"We await details from... on its basis for the delay while evaluating our next options," the company said. The decision was a surprise becaus as Boeing was the sole remaining bidder for the $7.7 billion job. It is a blow to fighter-jet production in St. Louis, where an estimated 2,000 people work on the F-15's final assembly line and thousands more work at suppliers.

Boeing offered its F-15 Silent Eagle, but South Korean critics say the plane lacks state-of-the-art stealth capabilities and cannot effectively cope with North Korea's increasing nuclear threats.

Lockheed Martin's F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and EADS' Eurofighter Typhoon were eliminated for exceeding Seoul's budget cap.

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