Bulgaria | Parliament approves purchase of 8 new F-16 fighters
Defence Redefined
Published on 28/11/2022 at 10:35

Bulgaria’s parliament has approved, by 151 votes in favor, 42 votes against and 8 abstentions, the international agreement (LOA) BU-D-SAD “Acquisition of 8 new F-l6 C/D Block aircraft 70, ammunition, training and maintenance means, spare parts, initial support and training for the Bulgarian Air Force” and the international agreement (LOA) BU-PLBC “Multifunctional Information Distribution System – Joint Tactical Radio System (MIDS JTRS) and related support and equipment”. The bill was approved on second reading.

The two agreements implement the second stage of the project to acquire new fighter aircraft for the Bulgarian Air Force. The agreements amount to USD 1,292,740,102 and USD 3,672,083 respectively.

Bulgaria’s required fiscal expenditure for the second stage of the new fighter aircraft project totals US $1,296,412,185 plus VAT. Since Bulgaria is entitled to pay in installments for all its recently concluded agreements under the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program, the money is scheduled to be paid within ten years.

The scheduled yearly payments were proposed by the US government. The schedule may change if a specific agreement is amended, in accordance with the terms and proceedings of the Law on International Agreements of the Republic of Bulgaria and/or in coordination with the Bulgarian Ministry of Finance.

For confidentiality reasons, Article 3 of the bill proposes that the National Assembly order that the agreements not be made public. This is the second batch of eight F-16 aircraft that Bulgaria is to acquire.

The process to reach the agreements began in August 2021, with a Letter of Request for a Letter of Offer and Acceptance (LOR for LOA) from the then acting Defence Secretary, followed by negotiations conducted during the tenure of the last regular government. The final agreements were signed on July 15, 2022 at the US European Command on November 9, 2022 in Sofia.

The agreement for the purchase of the first eight F-16 Block 70 aircraft and the provision of related support, munitions, Sidewinder AIM 9X Block II missiles and related equipment and services worth US $1.2 billion was signed in July 2019. The first two aircraft were to be delivered in mid-2023 and the last two in the first quarter of 2024, but the Covid-19 pandemic delayed the implementation of the project.

Source: AMNA

Also read: Balkan Spirit 2022 | Bulgarian, Greek and Romanian Special Forces demonstrate operational procedures




Pin It on Pinterest

Share This