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Norway orders first two F-35 fighters from US
Posted On: Jun 18, 2012
Commencing the largest public procurement project in its history, Norway has ordered the first two F-35 Lightening II Joint Strike Fighters for its armed forces.
Norwegian Defence Minister Espen Barth Eide authorised the order to buy the stealth fighters from the US on June 15.
"For the first time in three decades we are now ordering new combat aircraft for the Armed Forces. This marks a key milestone in the Norwegian F-35 programme and the beginning of the largest public procurement in Norwegian history," the Defence Minister said.
"The F-35, which Norway selected in 2008, represents a completely new generation of combat aircraft that will form a corner stone of the future Norwegian Armed Forces," he added.
The Parliament had approved a new Defence White Paper on June 14 which had confirmed the overall ambition for up to 52 F-35s for the Norwegian Armed Forces, the Defence Ministry said.
The overall cost of the procurement phase of the project is estimated at NOK 60 billion/USD 10 billion in real terms, it said.
The two aircraft authorised on June 15 are expected to be joined by a second pair in 2016, and will be based in the United States as part of a joint partner training centre. They are to be followed by up to 48 additional aircraft from 2017 that are to be based at Orland Main Air Station in central Norway, the Ministry said.
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