Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Norway budgets to purchase 6 more F-35s

The F-35 train keeps on rolling with Norway budgeting to purchase 6 more F-35s in addition to the 6 they've already ordered:
The Scandinavian nation had already ordered six of the jets this year, but it wants six more. If approved by the Norwegian Parliament, the deal would be worth 7.38 billion kroner, roughly $1.23 billion.

The Norwegian government announced its intentions to procure 52 of the F-35 fighter jets in 2008 for a $64 billion price tag. Norway had already purchased four F-35 fighters in 2011. The fighter jets would be delivered by 2018 with the six already approved.

Monday’s proposal came as part of the outgoing parliament’s 2014 budget. The current government is stepping down after losing last month’s parliamentary elections with the Conservative Party’s Erna Solberg defeat of the Labour Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg.
Meanwhile, Dutch pilots begin their F-35 flight training at the end of this month:
The Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF) is to shortly begin training air and ground personnel on the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF), the country's Defence Minister disclosed on 9 October.

Speaking to parliament in the Hague, Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert said that RNLAF pilots and technicians will begin training at Eglin Air Force Base (AFB) in Florida at the end of October. The disclosure comes weeks after she announced that the Netherlands will procure a total of 37 JSFs to replace the RNLAF's Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcons.

The pilots will start off with theoretical training and begin flying with the JSF in December. The training aims to prepare pilots and maintenance personnel for the operational test phase beginning in 2015.
 They'll train on the two Dutch F-35As delivered this year and last year.


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