Two more F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft, from the group of five, arrived in the country
The third and fourth F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft – from the new batch of five to be equipped with the Romanian Air Force – arrived on Friday, October 30, from Portugal, at Air Base 86 “Lieutenant Aviator Gheorghe Mociornita”, from Borcea.
The last aircraft in the batch of five will be delivered in the first quarter of 2021.
The acquisition of the new batch of F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft and its package of goods and services will ensure that Romania’s security is increased by the permanent execution of national/NATO airspace defence, in peacetime and in crisis situations, through the NATO-commanded Permanent Air Policing Service (SLP-PA), in line with its commitments.
The acquisition of the five aircraft was made in accordance with Law 237/2019 for the further development of air operational capability contained in the Initial Transition Phase of the Concept of Gradual Achievement of Air Defence Capability under the Air Force Multirole Aircraft Programme, which was published in the Official Gazette on 19.12.2019.
In the same month, the contract was also signed with the Government of the Portuguese Republic for the purchase of aircraft, from the surplus of that country, as well as a package of goods and services which includes, inter alia, the modernisation of aircraft to a higher standard, elements of logistical support and the training of technical engineering personnel.
Letter of Offer and Acceptance – LOA, specific to the Foreign Military Sales Program – FMS, are being awarded to the United States Government of Complementary Services.
The award of contracts shall be in accordance with the provisions of Article 22(f) of the OUG no. 114/2011, approved with amendments and additions by Law No.125/2012, with subsequent amendments and additions.
The program will also increase the level of training of engineering technical personnel, as well as the creation of capital repair capability for engines equipping F-16 aircraft.
The Romanian Air Force also has 14 F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft, which are already carrying out air policing missions.
The CSAT judgment of 27.09.2012 approved the Concept of gradual realization of air defence capability under the “Air Force Multirole Aircraft” programme which provides for the gradual realization of the final operational capability, represented by three combat squadrons equipped with 16 multirole aircraft each. For this purpose, they were signed, in accordance with the provisions of Law No. 240/2013, contracts with the Government of the Portuguese Republic and the Government of the United States for the purchase of 12 F-16 aircraft. Aircraft were delivered between 2016-2017 – six on 29.09.2016, three on 15.11.2016 and three on 28.09.2017.
The first two aircraft in the new batch of five arrived in Romania in August this year, and after joining the Romanian Air Force and the last F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft (scheduled for the first quarter of 2021), all 17 aircraft – in the M5.2R cofiguration, will undergo a modernization program to the M6XR standard.
The adoption of Law 237/2019 and the signing of the contract with the Portuguese Republic provide the prerequisites for the national defence industry to carry out maintenance work, capital engine repairs and the modernisation of F-16 aircraft. The operator S.C. AEROSTAR S.A. – Maintenance Center for F 16 aircraft equipped with the Romanian Army, will provide maintenance for this type of aircraft, SMFA and AEROSTAR having concluded a cooperation protocol in this regard.
MApN Press Office