- Lockheed Martin has been awarded a $5.6 billion contract modification to an existing contract for Lot 11 low-rate acquisition of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. The US Navy contract modification provides for the procurement of 74 fiscal 2017 aircraft, comprised of 48 F-35A aircraft for the Air Force, 18 F-35B aircraft for the Marine Corps, and eight F-35C aircraft for the Navy and Marine Corps. Work will primarily be carried out in Fort Worth, Texas, El Segundo, Calif., Warton, Britain, Cameri, Italy and other sites across the United States. The work is projected to be finished be December 2020. An additional contract modification that will provide $2.2 billion for 50 F-35s slated for allied and FMS sales is anticipated later this month.
- A $93 million DoD contract has been awarded to Boeing for engineering and technical support for the USAF’s E-3 Airborne Early Warning and Control System radar aircraft. The deal will also generate technical requirements for the E-3s of Japan, NATO, Britain, Saudi Arabia and France. Work will be performed at Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and is expected to be complete by July 9, 2022.
- Saab is to partner with Lockheed Martin in a $288 million contract to provide combat training systems to the US Army. The firms’ modular training solution, known as the Vehicle Tactical Engagement Simulation System (VTESS), combines multiple training systems for vehicle crews into a single product line for trucks and smaller vehicles, and laser transmitters for both small arms and main guns for armored vehicles. Saab’s portion of the work includes the provision of laser simulators, detectors and electronics to help troops conduct live combat exercises using existing vehicles and weapons systems. Deliveries will take place between 2017 and 2018.
Middle East & North Africa
- Bahrain has awarded a direct commercial sale contract to Lockheed Martin for the provision of Sniper Advanced Targeting Pods (ATP) for its F-16 fleet. Valued at $22.45 million, deliveries of the pods, along with spares and support equipment for integration, will take place in early 2018 in order to meet the Gulf monarchy’s urgent needs. The Sniper Advanced Targeting Pod combines sensor detection with laser and GPS-targeting information to precision guided weapons. It can also serve in a surveillance role to provide exact locations of targets. Bahrain is the 25th international customer for the program.
- The Trump administration has cleared and notified Congress of the sale of AN/AAR-57A(V)7 Common Missile Warning Systems (CMWS) to the Netherlands. Amsterdam will receive a total of thirty-two sets of AN/AAR-57A(V)7 systems in conjunction with 33 AN/AVR-2B laser detecting sets, stipulated in another Foreign Military Sale (FMS) case. Also included in the amended FMS case would be mission equipment, hardware and services required to implement customer unique post modifications, communication and navigation equipment, special tools and test equipment, ground support equipment, technical data, publications, MWO/ECP, technical assistance, and training, and other related elements of logistics and program support. The estimated cost of the modified sale amounts to $58.2 million.
- Washington has also cleared the $1.035 billion sale of Joint Light Tactical Vehicles (JLTV) and accessories to the UK. Under the deal, as many as 2,747 vehicles will be delivered, alongside baseline integration kits, basic issue item kits, B-kit armor, engine arctic kits, fording kits, run-flat kits, spare tire kits, silent watch kits, power expansion kits cargo cover kits, maintainer and operator training, and US logistics and support services. If approved by Congress, JLTV manufacturer Oshkosh Defense will act as main contractor.
- Pentagon officials have briefed the German military on the F-35 JSF as a replacement to its aging Tornado fighter jets. However, Berlin has yet to make any procurement decisions as it mulls over an off-the-shelf purchase of an existing fighter or participate in a new European next-generation fighter development program. The German Air Force requested the F-35 briefing in May, and the Defense Ministry plans to send Washington a formal “letter of request” for information about the F-35 and Boeing Co’s F-15 and F/A-18E/F fighter jets later this summer, the ministry spokesman said. It is also requesting information from Airbus on a next-gen weapons system.
- Thailand’s military government has approved the $258 million purchase of eight T-50 advanced jets from South Korea. News of the sale comes after accusations levelled at the government that its recent defense purchases have come exclusively from China, including the controversial sale of three submarines that provoked questions over its transparency. Bangkok has moved to dissuade the acquisitions, saying that it was not buying exclusively from China and is still making purchases from other countries, including old ally the US. The T-50 sale is the second phase of a 2015 deal in which Thailand bought four jets from South Korea.
- China’s first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, leaves Hong Kong after its maiden visit: