Oman increases C-130J order backlog by two

Washington DC
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Oman has decided to triple its fleet of Lockheed Martin C-130Js, adding orders for two new aircraft.

The two tactical airlifters, including one stretched C-130J-30 model, will be delivered between late 2013 and early 2014, Lockheed says. Oman ordered its first C-130J in July 2009 for delivery in 2012.

The new order appears to fully replace Oman's fleet of three C-130Hs, which were acquired between 1981 and 1983, as listed by Flightglobal's MiliCAS database.

Jim Grant, Lockheed vice-president for air mobility and special operations forces programmes, says Oman's latest order recognises "the proven qualities of the world's most advanced airlifter".

Lockheed has steadily made inroads in Oman since 2005, when Muscat ordered 12 F-16 Block 50s. Two weeks ago, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency notified Congress of a possible sale of 18 more F-16s.