ZURICH, March 25 (Reuters) - Switzerland confirmed on Wednesday it would delay until at least 2010 a decision on buying new fighter jets -- a move seen by media as a reprisal against Germany for its campaign against Swiss bank secrecy.
The Ministry of Defence, headed by nationalist politician Ueli Maurer, said in a statement the ministry would first draft a report on the country’s defence policy, due out in December 2009, and then decide on whether it needed new planes.
A decision on the project, worth 2.2 billion Swiss francs ($1.96 billion), was initially expected in July.
“The decision will be delayed by at least six months,” said a defence ministry spokesman, who declined to comment on any link between a tax spat with Germany and the decision.
Germany is one of the countries that could build the jets.
Reporting by Andrew Thompson; writing by Lisa Jucca; editing by Tim Hepher