Turkey completes deal for 30 new F-16s

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The US Air Force has finalised a $797 million deal for Turkey to buy 30 Lockheed Martin F-16C/D Block 50 fighters.

Announced on 25 February, the contract award comes about 21 months after Ankara signed a letter of offer and acceptance with the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency.

The deal includes General Electric F110-129 engines and Northrop Grumman APG-68(V)9 radars. All of the aircraft will be assembled in Turkey by Tusas Aerospace Industries, while Turkish Engine Industries will assemble 42 engines. US supplier ITT will also provide advanced integrated defensive electronic warfare system equipment and countermeasures dispensers for the fleet from next year under a subcontract worth $99.8 million.

The Turkish air force is also upgrading all 219 of its legacy F-16C/Ds to the Block 50 standard under a separate deal with Lockheed.

 
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Turkey is also a partner in Lockheed's F-35 Joint Strike Fighter programme, and plans to start taking delivery of up to 100 of the stealthy aircraft from around 2014.