Tempted by cheap prices, Thailand is ready to buy the F-35 to replace the F-16 fighter


Tempted by cheap prices, Thailand is ready to buy the F-35 to replace the F-16 fighter

Bangkok - Thailand has shown interest in Lockheed Martin's F-35 stealth fighter. Quoted from Reuters, the Company's Senior Vice President of International Business, Tim Cahillm confirmed that Thailand is indeed interested in buying the F-35 fighter aircraft.

For information, the F-35 fighter aircraft is said to be the most advanced aircraft in the world and is categorized as a very sensitive US military asset. Therefore, the F-35 fighter is only sold to the closest US ally. Meanwhile, the Thai Air Force wants to buy the F-35 to replace the aging F-16 aircraft.

Currently, the Thai Air Force operates 12 Gripen C/D fighter aircraft. The plane was obtained from Sweden. In addition to the Gripen C/D, Thailand also operates dozens of F-16 and F-5E aircraft that it has used since the late 1980s.

Quoted from Defense Security Asia, the Thai Air Force Commander expressed interest in the F-35 because currently the price per unit has decreased. When it first hit the market in 2007, the unit price for the F-35A was around $220 million.

As more countries acquire the aircraft, the price per unit of the F-35 has fallen to $79 million today. Even though the price is much cheaper than before, Thailand seems to be still renegotiating for a cheaper price.

"With negotiations between the two sides (Thailand and Lockheed Martin) the price per unit of the F-35 aircraft can be lowered further to more than US$70 million each," said the Commander of the Thai Air Force, quoted by Defense Security Asia.

According to him, Thailand needs new aircraft to replace the aging F-16 and F-5E aircraft. Both aircraft have served the country for more than three decades. He said, as aircraft age, so do maintenance costs, in addition to the risks to pilots. The purchase of the F-35 is expected to be the best solution for Thailand.

In addition, the procurement of new aircraft will also reduce Thailand's spending more. Because old aircraft will require even more maintenance costs.

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post